Report proposes 329 euro per household minimum income

Every fifth person in Estonia lives in relative poverty and a 329 euro per household guaranteed income would be enough to tackle poverty, a European Anti-Poverty Network (EAPN) report said.

EAPN organized a debate in Parliament on Wednesday, saying that the European Parliament has approved a resolution that a minimum income should be 60 percent of a nation’s median income, which works out to 329 euros per household in Estonia.

Tallinn University professor Lauri Leppik said a 329-euro per month guaranteed income would cost 208 million euros annually – 1.2 percent of GDP.

Riina Solman, the Estonian coordinator for EAPN, told ERR radio that people are not able to survive with the current model of benefits.

Solman said the 329-euro figure is a few years old and only takes into consideration the very basic requirements. She said the figure should be reevaluated, and expenses such as a internet conection, which is vital for school children, also added.

Solman said not only those on benefits fall into the relative or absolute poverty categories, but also people with jobs.

Source: ERR News

Births outstrip deaths in June

More people were born in June than died, the first such reversal since September 2013, although birth rates are higher and death rates lower during summer months.

Only 23 births more were recorded compared to the number of deaths, which was 1,201 in June.

A total of 13,831 births were recorded last year, 1,643 fewer than deaths. The last time more people were born than died in Estonia was in 2010, when the difference was 35. Before that one would have to go all the way back to 1990.

Robert, Oskar and Artjom were the most popular boys names, while Sofia, Liisa and Lisandra topped the list for girls.

Source: ERR News

Estonia 2nd in democracy index

Freedom House has released its latest index on development of democracy in Central and Eastern Europe and the fomer Soviet Union, in which Estonia places second of 29 countries after Slovenia.

Only 13 of the 29 countries are a “consolidated democracy,” six are in a transition stage and 10 have an authoritarian regimes, the organization said.

The index was based on events, political decisions, regulations and social trends in 2013.

The overall score for the 29 countries declined, but Estonia’s index stayed the same as last year.

For more on results, methodology and reasons for persisting in viewing Eurasia in terms of a seemingly outdated “post-Soviet” model, view the complete report.

Read more from here

Source: ERR News

Poll: Majority of Estonians are against gay marriages

The proposed Cohabitation Act in parliament is opposed by 58 percent of Estonian inhabitants, a TNS Emor nationwide poll commissioned by ERR revealed.

Thirty-four percent of the 555 respondents were in favor and 8 percent replied “can’t say.”

The draft legislation stops short of permitting gay marriage but would, among other things, extend financial benefits to cohabiting partners of the same sex.

Read more from ERR News

Tallinn beer festival Õllesummer 9-12.07.2014

Yesterday, immediately after the finishing chords of the Song Festival, the works to put together the 21st beer festival Õllesummer started. The entire festival must be fully prepared by Wednesday at 5 p.m. The event is estimated to attract more than 50 thousand visitors during its four days.

This week more than 3000 workers will be involved with Õllesummer. Tens of trucks will deliver seven stages, tens and tens of sound and lighting systems, and furniture for cafes, bars and restaurants.

Traders will bring more than 300 refrigerators to the Song Festival grounds, which will keep cool more than one hundred thousand litres of drinks and more than 40 tonnes of food. At Õllesummer a total of 225 beer varieties from 20 states will be presented. A total of 72 places to eat will be erected on the festival grounds.

The organiser asks all patrons to reserve plenty of time and prefer public transport. Paid parking lots are open by the building of Estonian Exhbitions and near the Lasnamäe gate. Each day of the festival, there will be special buses of Õllesummer departing at 00.45 to the centre and at 1.30 to Mustamäe and Õismäe.

The police asks to follow temporary traffic signs and instructions of traffic organisers.

Õllesummer asks all visitors to not take with them video cameras and professional photo cameras (all cameras with a screwable scope). This was requested from the organiser by foreign artists.

 

Tickets are sold here – http://www.piletilevi.ee/eng/tickets/festival/ollesummer/ollesummer-2014-31718/

Program is here – http://www.ollesummer.ee/eng/program

Festival homepage

Estonian Song and Dance Celebration 2014 (video)

Estonian Song and Dance Festival celebration

Estonian Song and Dance Festival celebration

The celebration of the Estonian Song and Dance Festival takes place July 4-6, 2014 in Tallinn.

Song and dance celebrations are an old and very important tradition for Estonia and Estonians (the first song celebration took place in 1869 and the first dance celebration in 1934) and these celebrations are nowadays held every five years. In 2003 our tradition of song and dance celebrations was entered to UNESCO’s List of Intangible Cultural Heritage.

Program – http://2014.laulupidu.ee/en/

Tickets are quickly sold out, so check out here – http://www.piletilevi.ee/eng/tickets/teater/muu/xxvi-laulu-ja-xix-tantsupidu-aja-puudutus-puudutuse-aeg-32425/

Pictures- http://2014.laulupidu.ee/en/gallery/

 

Check out the video here

Lotte themepark too expensive

Parents have not been amused to learn that admission to Lottemaa, the Lotte theme park that is being developed in Tahkuranna near Pärnu, will cost EUR 15 for a child older than 3 years and EUR 18 for adults, writes Eesti Päevaleht.

This means that a family with two children would have to fork out EUR 66 plus catering and transport costs.

According to the marketing manager Jorgen Sumin, the admission price includes about 100 attractions.

Read more from BBN

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