OPPOSITION PLATFORM — FOR LIFE demands that the government abides by the ruling of the Constitutional Court of Ukraine on restoring constitutional rights of citizens who had suffered from the Chornobyl disaster. This was announced by MP Serhiy Lovochkin on the 33th anniversary of the Chornobyl tragedy, on April 26.

“The funding of allowances for Chornobyl victims and their families should be provided in full volume — by amending the budget for 2019 and increasing the items on social support for Chornobyl veterans by at least 2.2bln hryvnia,” Liovochkin said.

The politician reminded of 1.9mln Ukrainian citizens who hold the status of ‘Chornobyl victims.’ Over the past five years, Lovochkin said, their social support has been deteriorating.

In 2013, the state budget of that year provided 2.6bln hryvnia on social support of Chornobyl victims, and in 2019, the same budget item only saw 1.98bln hryvnia, which is by 24 percent less in face value, and by 72 percent less in real terms (indexed for price growth over 2014–2018 and inflation rate in 2019). In USD equivalent, the funding of the program has dropped by 4.7 times, and that of 2019 will only make one fifth of the 2013 level.

Since 2014, two programs have been removed from the state budget: one aimed at comprehensive healthcare services and cancer treatment for Chornobyl veterans, and the other aimed at providing them with housing. In 2014, a number of amendments were adopted, lowering about a dozen social guarantees for Chornobyl victims. This legislative change negatively affected almost 2mln people, more than 100,000 of them disabled.

“Last year, the Constitutional Court ruled to restore all allowances and social guarantees for Chornobyl victims they were deprived of in December 2014. This ruling is obligatory for implementation, but the government makes no steps to do so or allocate funds for the payments. Each and every politician’s duty is to make the government return the allowances to those two million people. The process of the shift of power has started, and it will end with the parliamentary election this fall. I am certain that the allowances for the Chornobyl victims will be restored by the new coalition and the new government by end of the year,” Lovochkin said.