Living conditions in the Czech Republic have improved since the transition to a market economy began in 1989. The country has approached the standard of living in Western Europe, but is still well below the average when it comes to economic standards.
There are large income gaps in the country. Households in Prague have, on average, significantly higher incomes than those living in the country. The poorest are the country’s northwestern parts. The level of education is also higher among Prague residents, and unemployment is lower.
- Countryaah Official Site: Official statistics for population in Czech Republic, including population growth, density, and estimation in next 50 years.
According to the country’s statistical office, the average income for the Czechs in 2019 was EUR 1200 per month. Two years earlier, almost ten percent were estimated to live in poverty.
There is a social insurance system that includes, among other things, unemployment insurance, sickness benefit, parental leave and pension. The bourgeois government in 2010-2013 made major cuts in social welfare, among other things lowered sickness benefit and child allowances. The new tripartite government that took office in 2014 has broken down some of the savings that were made then, among other things, abolished some of the patient fees introduced in 2012.
A large part of the health care is run privately. Primary care is run almost exclusively by private companies, as are pharmacies.
Expenditure on healthcare rose during most of the 1990s, but since then the Czech Republic has usually been below the OECD average in terms of how much money goes to healthcare, both in terms of GDP and per capita. In recent years, there has been a large shortage of staff, mainly in hospitals. One reason for this is that healthcare professionals apply abroad, especially to Germany and Austria, where they can receive both higher wages and better working conditions. In an attempt to stop the staff escape, wage increases were promised by 10 percent in 2017.
Parental leave covers 28 weeks. A new law that guarantees fathers seven days off (when they receive 70 percent of their salary) in connection with the child’s birth came into force in 2018.
On average, Czech men retire when they are 63 years old, while women stop working about a year earlier. The retirement age has gradually increased since the mid-1990s. In 2016, the government presented a proposal that everyone born after 1971 should work until they turned 65.
The influence of women in politics and business is limited, despite the fact that women were given the right to vote in 1920. In 2015, 40 of the MP’s 200 members were women.
Between the 1970s and the 1990s, many Roma women were forcibly sterilized. Even in recent years, Roma women have been sterilized without their consent. In 2009, the government apologized to the victims and said measures had been taken to prevent it from happening again.
Prostitution is generally allowed, but procrastination is prohibited. Human trafficking of women forced into prostitution and other forced labor is a problem, despite prison sentences against human traffickers. The women, who come from the Czech Republic, other Eastern European countries, the Philippines, Nigeria and Vietnam, are exploited both in the Czech Republic and in other European countries, according to a report from the US State Department in 2015. Roman women are said to be particularly vulnerable.
Children’s day is permitted under Czech law.
In 2006, the Czech Republic became the first of the countries of the former Eastern bloc to allow people of the same sex to enter into partnerships. However, marriage between people of the same sex is not allowed. In 2016, the ban on gay people to adopt children was lifted. However, they may only adopt as individuals, not as same-sex couples.
The marriage age is 18 years. Some Roma, especially women, get married sooner than that. However, 16-year-olds can get married with permission from the court.
The law prohibits discrimination against persons with disabilities.
FACTS – SOCIAL CONDITIONS
Infant Mortality: 3 per 1000 births (2018)
Percentage of HIV infected: 0.1 percent (2018)
Proportion of HIV infected among young women
0.1 percent (2018)
Proportion of HIV infected among young men: 0.1 percent (2018)
Proportion of population with access to clean water: 99.9 percent (2015)
Proportion of the population having access to toilets: 99.1 percent (2017)
Public expenditure on health care as a percentage of GDP: 7.3 percent (2015)
Public expenditure on health care per person: US $ 1,322 (2016)
Proportion of women in parliament: 22 percent (2018)
Minister for the Environment goes after corruption business
Environment Minister Pavel Drobil from ODS resigns after allegations of misappropriation of state funds. The government survives a vote of no confidence in the Chamber of Deputies.
Social Democratic success in the Senate elections
Elections are held for the Senate. Social Democratic ČSSD gets its own majority in the Senate for the first time. All government parties can see their support fall.
Savings plans raise protests
The Government is proposing a new budget that includes salary reductions for public employees as well as reductions in pensions, parental benefits and other social benefits. The aim is to reduce the budget deficit from 4.8 percent of GDP to 4.6 percent by 2011. The savings plans cause protests, including a large demonstration in Prague.
New bourgeois government coalition
ODS leader Petr Nečas forms a coalition government together with the conservative Top 09 and the right-wing party VV. Top 09 leader Karel Schwarzenberg gets the post of Foreign Minister and VV leader Radek John becomes Minister of Foreign Affairs.
The Social Democrats become the biggest party
In the election, the Social Democrats will be the largest party with 22 percent of the vote and 53 seats in the Chamber of Deputies, while the ODS, which loses more than a third of its seats, will receive 20 percent. Two new Conservative parties Tradition responsibility prosperity (Top 09) and Public affairs (VV) have great success and gain almost 17 and 11 percent respectively and the Communist Party receives 11 percent. Both the Christian Democratic Union-People’s Party (KDU-ČSL) and the Green Party fall out of the Chamber of Deputies.
Social Democrats party leader Jiří Paroubek is forced to leave after the party’s election defeat. He is succeeded by Bohuslav Sobotka.
High ranking ODS politicians are leaving
The Speaker of the Chamber of Deputies, Miloslav Vlček of the ODS, resigns on suspicion that he has misused public funds. He is succeeded by Miroslava Němcová from the same party.
ODS leaders are forced to step down
The leader of the Democratic National Party (ODS), Mirek Topolánek, resigns in the midst of the electoral movement after voicing his condescension about the church, Jews and gays. He is succeeded by Petr Nečas.
Right party is prohibited
The Workers’ Party (DS), a small party on the far right, is banned by government law. This is the first time a party has been forced away for political reasons after the fall of communism in 1989.