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Education, abortion, and immigration: Piñera’s first 30 days

What have been the most important measures of his Government?

Education, abortion, and immigration: Piñera's first 30 days

It's been a month since Sebastián Piñera took office as president of Chile, his second term after the 2010-2014 term.

Leer en español: Educación, aborto e inmigración: Los primeros 30 días de Piñera

It has been a first month of ups and downs, with successes and mistakes. 30 days of work in which the president has been seen working on his Government plan, using the power of social networks, and that have given him a good level of approval among the population. According to the latest Cadem survey, Piñera has a level of approval of 55% and a disapproval that reaches 27%.

In its Government program, Piñera established five major national agreements, the most important being the National Grand Accord for Children, which according to the Cadem survey, brings a high level of optimism in the population, reaching 68%, in counterweight of 30% that is pessimistic about it.

Despite having arrived at La Moneda with a more conciliatory and dialogical attitude, some of the decisions taken by Piñera and his team of ministers have not been exempt from controversy, generating divisions and tensions in both the sectors of the New Majority, and of Frente Amplio and Chile itself We are going back on some legislation approved by its predecessor, Michelle Bachelet.

Specifically, there have been 5 most important measures taken by Piñera and his team of ministers in this first month:

Restructuring of Carabineros: One of the promises of Piñera's government was the profound change of Carabineros de Chile, an institution whose image and prestige has been heavily tainted by the millionaire embezzlement and falsification of evidence in the context of Operation Hurricane. A few hours after the current President took office, the general director of the institution, Bruno Villalobos, presented his resignation to the institution, thus initiating the process of transformation that began with the appointment of Hermes Soto as the new leader of the uniformed police, and later, canceling more than 20 generals.

The national chief executive has established the performance of external accounting audits, as well as the promotion of the specialization of police functions, all with the objective of allowing Carabineros to recover the respect lost as a result of the scandals that have taken place.

Change in the conscientious objection protocol: The change in the conscientious objection protocol of the Three Causes Abortion Law has generated controversies in the political sectors, as well as in the population and in health institutions. With the arrival of Piñera, the protocol establishes that private health centers that have agreements with the State can be conscientious objectors, something that the original document established by the Bachelet Government did not allow.

From the feminist movements, Human Rights and civil society, they demanded that the General Comptroller of the Republic leave this resolution without effect.

Elimination of Article 63 of the Higher Education Law: One of the achievements of the Government of Michelle Bachelet was to end the profit of the drivers in private education institutions, through the Higher Education Law and Article 63. However, a decision of the controversial Constitutional Court (TC) reversed this article, thus allowing profit in education, a measure that has generated high rejection in student movements, who called for a mobilization for next April 19.

Withdrawal of the project that replaces the CAE: In her last week as President, Michelle Bachelet entered a new project to replace the Credit with State Guarantee (CAE), the State Credit of Higher Education, another measure that was reversed by the controversial Education Minister, Gerardo Varela, who announced that he will withdraw Bachelet's proposal and enter a new one within a period of 90 days. This was another measure that generated the rejection of student movements, which criticize the participation of banks in the CAE.

Immigration reform: This week President Sebastián Piñera presented a new immigration reform project with which he seeks to "bring order to our home." The proposal responds to the growing wave of immigrants who are arriving in Chile in search of a better quality of life, mainly from Peru, Bolivia, Colombia, Venezuela, and Haiti.

According to information from El Mostrador, the new regulation includes the creation of a National Migration Service and a registry of foreigners in Chile. The granting of temporary residence for a period of one year, then opting for permanent residence, and applying for Chilean nationality after 5 years, are part of the new proposal. The change is that temporary residence can only be requested outside Chile, while those who enter as tourists, cannot change their status from tourist to resident inside the national territory.


Latin American Post | José Leonardo Olavarría Vera

Translated from "Los primeros 30 días de Piñera"

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