Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s Remarks at the Start of the Weekly Cabinet Meeting
We will take a very firm stance against anyone who tries to attack us or attacks us from any area. I mean any source: rogue factions, organizations – anyone. In any event, we see Hamas responsible to any attack launched or organized from the Gaza Strip against us.
We will bring to the cabinet today a series of important appointments, the first being Meir Ben Shabbat as the National Security Advisor. Meir has been acting as a deputy advisor for the past three months and I have decided to appoint him permanently.
I think there is no one worthier then him for this position. I am sure that my colleagues in the Cabinet and the Government have also been impressed by the qualities he brings to this job, his sharpness of mind, his rich experience, the clarity of which he presents things. He does not round things up, he does not cover up, he says his opinion in the clearest possible way, and I think this will be an opportunity for Meir who has contributed greatly to Israel’s security, to make another significant contribution to its national security. I am congratulating in advance, because I am certain that this appointment as well as the other appointments will be accepted unanimously.
We are now bringing before the government the expansion of the “Heating Grant for Senior Citizens” program. This means that a quarter of a million senior citizens who receive income support will receive this grant, and not only those living in colder areas. The Ministry of Labor, Social Affairs and Social Services is allocating for this purpose a total of 109 million NIS. This is a welcomed initiative by Minister Chaim Katz, with the understanding and agreement of the finance minister and mine, and I am certain that the Government will bless it and pass it on”
Minister of Labor, Social Affairs and Social Services – Haim Katz:
“We heard the opening remarks by the Prime Minister who said we have to take care of the citizen’s security due to our location and hostile environment.
At the same time, the government does not stop taking care of its citizens and this time it is about the senior citizens in every senior citizen’s household that receives income support. In the past we had 46,854 people who received a heating grant at the cost of 26 million NIS. This year, after discussing it with the Minister of Finance, we will permanently legislate that every senior citizen who received income support will receive a heating grant by law, because there are senior citizens who live in Tel Aviv, which isn’t considered a cold city, but when the temperature drops to 4 degrees, they are cold. This is an additional stage of social treatment of the weaker populations of Israel.
I discussed this with the Prime Minister who gave his blessing as did the Minister of Finance. I thank you for giving me the opportunity to legislate and help the weaker populations, and in this case senior citizens receiving income support.”