OECD well-being survey shows impact of crisis on Greeks

The average Greek household has been affected considerably by the financial crisis, according to the well-being report published on Tuesday by the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD).

The report found that from a total of 11 criteria used to measure a country’s well-being, Greece only managed to beat the average of the 34 OECD member states in three of them, while in the other eight it fared below average.

It beat the average level for health, work-life balance and personal safety, but it was below par in terms of education and skills, income and wealth, social engagement, jobs and salaries, social interconnections, housing, subjective well-being and quality of environment.

The OECD report notes that Greek households’ real disposable income suffered a cumulative decline of 23 percent between 2007 and 2011, which is the greatest among the organization’s members. However, according to the report, the biggest impact of the crisis has originated from the reduction in employment and the deterioration in labor market conditions. The employment rate dropped by 10 percent from 2007 to 2012, while the rate of long-term unemployment grew by 10 percentage points.

Employment problems have had a major impact on the level of satisfaction Greeks get out of life. The share of Greeks that said they are very satisfied with their lives declined from 59 percent in 2007 to 34 percent in 2011, which is the lowest among OECD members.

Over the course of the crisis Greeks have also lost confidence in institutions and the way democracy functions. The share of Greeks that trust the government declined from 38 percent in 2007 to just 13 percent last year. Furthermore, 31 percent of Greeks said they are employed in a bad working environment, which is considerably higher than the European country average.

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