Case 1.657

DECISION No. 1.657 of 28 December 2010
Download Judgment: English Romanian
Country: Romania
Region: Europe
Year: 2010
Court: Constitutional Court [CURTEA CONSTITUŢIONALĂ]
Health Topics: Health systems and financing
Human Rights: Right to health, Right to social security
Tags: Budget, Health expenditures, Health funding, Health spending, Social security

The case was introduced by a group of 54 deputies under Article 146 of the Constitution seeking a constitutionality review of the 2011 State Budget Law. Alleged violations from the 2011 State Budget Law included: (1) the Government submitted the 2011 State Budget law two months later than the deadline mandated in the Constitution for laws to be submitted to parliament for approval; (2) the 2011 State Budget Law violated Art. 53 of the Constitution because the law grounded the state budget on a salary increase of only 15%, which granted a permanent character to measures reducing salary rights; (3) the 2011 State Budget Law violated Art. 47 of the Constitution because it “stipulates drastic reductions of allowances and incentives for demographic growth”; and (4) the law violated Art. 34 of the Constitution (guaranteed the right to protection of health and binding the state to take measures to ensure public hygiene and health) because it stipulated a reduction of 38% on the sums granted for the health sector “while it is unanimously accepted that the health sector has suffered from permanent under-financing.” The President of the Deputies Chamber submitted a viewpoint stating that the measures in the law were necessary to safeguard national security and the liberties of citizens.

The Court held that the 2011 State Budget Law was constitutional.

With respect to the alleged violation of Article 34 of the Constitution, the Court found that the law did not violate this article because social protection was designed to diminish social risks to the life conditions of the populations and because a strategy aimed at “the most vulnerable persons would risk not being supported by the rest of the population that is constantly feeling deprived of necessary resources to live decently.”

 

“Social protection represents a set of actions, decisions and measures undertaken by the society to prevent, diminish and eliminate the consequences of certain events that are considered social risks to the life conditions of the population. A strategy that would be limited to easing the situation of the most vulnerable persons would risk not being supported by the rest of the population that is constantly feeling deprived of necessary resources to live decently. The focus is especially on deprivation of economic resources.” Page 6.

“Protecţia socială reprezintă un ansamblu de acţiuni, decizii şi măsuri întreprinse de societate pentru prevenirea, diminuarea sau înlăturarea consecinţelor unor evenimente considerate ca riscuri sociale asupra condiţiilor de viaţă ale populaţiei.O strategie care s-ar limita la a uşura situaţia celor mai vulnerabile şi afectate persoane ar risca să nu primească suportul necesar al restului populaţiei, care se simte ea însăşi a fi într-o stare de lipsă permanentă a resurselor necesare pentru a asigura un mod de viaţă considerat decent. Accentul cade, în mod special, pe lipsa resurselor economice.” Page 5.

 

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