Jordanians Protest the New National Military Service Program Forcibly Enlisting All Unemployed 25 Year-Olds

Published September 24th, 2020 - 06:22 GMT
Jordanians Protest the New National Military Service Program Forcibly Enlisting All Unemployed 25 Years Olds
Individuals enrolled will receive a 100 JDs monthly stipend throughout the program. (Shutterstock: Niyazz)

Weeks after the Jordanian government has announced a new military service program that is compulsory for unemployed 25 year-olds, Jordanians are increasingly getting more and more frustrated about its details, expressing their dissatisfaction online with the program.

Translation: "I'm not against the military service program at all. I'm only against forcing those who were born in 1995, who provide for their families but not included in the social security program to get 100 JDs a month. Who is going to support their families? 

The 1-year program that has been described as an attempt to help unemployed people have better employment chances by providing them military training and professional experience in the private sector, especially that young people between the ages 25-29 are amongst the most unemployed in the country.

According to Jordanian officials, only males who were born in 1995, who have not had a social security subscription over the last year, which means they have not been enrolled in a full-time job as per Jordanian law, will be recruited in the program. Males who are enrolled in university programs, employed full-time or living abroad will not be eligible for the program.

 

Translation: "You must be enrolled in the military service program against your will. If you are an unorganized worker making 1000 JDs you're still unemployed according to the government and we'll have to recruit you for one year for 100 JDs a month. In a few months, the government will release a report produce their good management of the unemployment crisis through the military service program."

Moreover, females born in 1995 with the same employment status will undergo a 9-month training only, as they will be exempt from the military training 3-month segment.

Individuals enrolled will receive a 100 JDs (~$140 USD) monthly stipend throughout the program.

These details and the fact that individuals, who are eligible for the program, will be forced to join it once they prove that they are only sons in their families and after passing a medical test have not been warmly welcomed by all Jordanians.

While many people have expressed their agreement with the program, saying that it is an opportunity for young people to enhance their chances of getting employed, especially as the country approaches a 23% unemployment rate, many others were not happy about some of the conditions included in the new government program.

Translation: "Many young people work in institutions that don't include them in the social security program. Some of them will be enlisted for military service. Rights of these young people have been violated the first time their employers didn't include then in the SS and now the injustice gets deeper as they are required to join the military service."

According to many social media users, many young people are either working as freelancers or in low-paying jobs that don't provide social security payments even though it's mandatory by law. The new law will still force such individuals to enlist for the program despite many of them being the only providers for their families.

The Jordanian government has been accused of trying to financially support the social security corporation while working on curbing the number of unemployed people to downplay the economic crisis that has worsened since the pandemic.


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