Saturday 12 June 2021

Women Face Social Obstacles To Providing Caja Coverage To Their Husbands

Working women in Costa Rica have difficulty insuring their unemployed and stay-at-home husband with the Social Security (Caja), despite the written rule against discrimination of gender.

COSTA RICA NEWS — Although it is in writing that they can, the reality across the country is that women have a difficult time insuring their husbands with the Caja Costarricense de Seguro Social (CCSS) or Caja as it is commonly referred to.

This reality came to light recently after a woman was forced to file an appeal with the Constitutional Court because the Caja denied insuring her husband, who is at home with the domestic chores.

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Confirming this reality is Fabricio Alvarado, legislator for the Partido Restauración Nacional, saying the Caja is far from putting into practice its written rule of “to be equal to all people.”

The legislator say, “although the regulations says it in writing, the reality is that women across the country cannot insure their husbands who stay at home taking care of the house … a situation affecting of hundreds of families living with this reality.”

Alvarado uses examples of comments he has received on his Facebook page, people sharing their experience with the Caja, paying their regular dues, expecting their families to be included in the insurance benefits, but that it doesn’t work the same when it is a woman applying for benefits for her husband.

Graciela Obando, from Guanacaste, is one of those. “I work and my husband is unemployed. We went to the Caja and they said that he could not be insured unless he had some disability or physical impairment,” she wrote.

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Martha Mora , from Cartago, says “Several years ago my husband and I went to the Caja office in Paraiso to apply and in an impolite way the official in charge said we could not because my husband was in good health and in condition to work and as such he could not be covered.”

Legislator Alvarado goes as far saying “there are two Cajas”, a Caja that on paper says women can insure their husbands and the other, the real world Caja, with a bizarre sense, almost as a virus to the social welfare of society, where none believes that a man is in need of his wife’s insurance coverage.”

Questioned to provide figures on how many women have been able to insure their husbands, officials at the Caja said they would be making such statistics public in a press released in the days ahead.


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