‘Social parasites’ database soon in Vitsebsk

Local officials, policemen, taxmen, doctors, employees of civil registry offices and housing services, and even the first secretaries of the state-controlled Youth Union committees will be included in the so-called employment commissions in Vitsebsk. To put it simply, they will look for ‘social parasites’ and take action.

Idlers Database To Be Made In Vitsebsk Region By Septemberthis is the title of the article published in the local newspaper Vitsebsk News. The state-run media outlet is not even picking words – just calling the unemployed ‘freeloaders’.

A list of those who will form the database has already been approved. There are mainly public servants on it.

“Of course, he authorities can create any commission, but their work should be transparent for civil society. Civil society representatives also have the right to join these commissions. I was sent to the commission by the republican human rights public association Belarusian Helsinki Committee. But they did not include me inventing the excuse that the commission had already been formed,” human rights activist Pavel Lyavinau said.

According to him, the members of the commission will have broad powers.

“These powers, if exercised, may directly violate the rights of citizens: there might be invasion of privacy, force to work, and even violation of the right to freedom, as the so-called parasites can be sent to the occupational therapy rehabs,Lyavinau stressed.

The number of the unemployed is highly likely to rise in Vitsebsk, and the authorities are getting ready in advance, experts say.

“In the near future entrepreneurs will join the ranks of the unemployed, as the existing legislation renders their work impossible. Therefore, the authorities have taken a step forward,” Iryna Yaskevich, Spokeswoman for the organizing committee of the Belarusian Trade Union Together.

In 2017, notorious Decree Nr 3 triggered a wave of protests across the country. Vitsebsk became notable for the most massive rallies in its history. Now, when the protest mood has been quashed, officials are set to hunt for those who have already found themselves in the hot seat.

AS reported earlier, the Labour Ministry has been tasked with creating a database of ‘idlers’ by December 1, 2018, It will be updated on a quarterly basis.

In April, the government decided on the people subject to Decree No. 1, which was introduced after massive protests against Decree No. 3 took place across the country. There is now a list of services to be paid in full by ‘parasites’.

On January 25, Alyaksandr Lukashenka signed Decree No. 1, which provides for measures to promote employment of the population. The new decree did not include norms on taxing non-working population. Persons who were previously recognized as payers of this fee were exempted from it.


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