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Migration: Economist: Debate about citizen’s allowance for Ukrainians is populism

Migration: Economist: Debate about citizen’s allowance for Ukrainians is populism
Migration: Economist: Debate about citizen’s allowance for Ukrainians is populism

According to the FDP, refugees from Ukraine should no longer receive citizen’s allowance in Germany. The proposal has been criticized.

Economist Marcel Fratzscher has criticized calls for a restriction of the citizen’s allowance for Ukrainian refugees as “pure populism.” “Nobody will be better off, nobody will have a single euro more if Germany treats refugees worse and cuts their benefits,” the president of the German Institute for Economic Research (DIW) told the Redaktionsnetzwerk Deutschland (RND).

“The German state must not spend less money on refugees, but make more efforts to ensure faster and better integration of refugees into the labor market and society,” Fratzscher demanded. This is also a huge economic opportunity, as the labor problem in this country will become massively worse in the coming years.

Criticism of demand

FDP General Secretary Bijan Djir-Sarai told the “Bild” newspaper: “Newly arriving war refugees from Ukraine should no longer receive citizen’s allowance in the future, but should be covered by the Asylum Seekers’ Benefits Act.” Similar demands have repeatedly come from the Union. Brandenburg’s Interior Minister Michael Stübgen (CDU), for example, argued that citizen’s allowance had become a “brake on taking up work.”

Joachim Rock from the Paritätischer Gesamtverband told the “Stuttgarter Zeitung” and the “Stuttgarter Nachrichten”: “We are astonished that we are jumping on the populist bandwagon of the citizen’s income debate, because it has nothing to do with the reality of life for most Ukrainians in Germany.” We know that many Ukrainians are eagerly learning German and successfully completing integration courses, said the head of the association’s social policy department. These people want to work and earn their own money.

The federal government had rejected the demands. The Ministry of Labor pointed out that if the job centers were responsible for Ukrainian refugees, measures could be taken more quickly to integrate them into the labor market.

This currently applies

While in the first few months after the start of the Russian war of aggression, Ukrainian refugees were only entitled to benefits under the Asylum Seekers Benefits Act, since June 2022 they have been able to receive basic social security, i.e. the same benefits as recipients of citizen’s allowance (then still Hartz IV). One of the reasons for this was that they are directly entitled to a residence permit and do not have to wait for a decision like asylum seekers.

Source: Stern

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