Germany

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Country: 
Germany
Working Group(s) / Area(s) of Work: 
Corporate Accountability
Strategic Litigation
Economic Policy

The plaintiff in this case is a man whose unemployment benefits were reduced first by 30% and then by 60% when he declined a proposed employer and later failed to accept a training and trial placement in another role. The man objected to the reductions unsuccessfully, and filed suit in the Social Court. Before rendering a decision, the Social Court stayed the proceedings in order to obtain judicial review from the Federal Constitutional Court (FCC) as to whether or not the sanctions scheme in question is in compliance with the Basic Law.

In 2005, Germany began the fourth stage of a program aimed at reducing the costs of the country’s social welfare system, an initiative named after its chief architect, Volkswagen personnel director, Peter Hartz. Hartz IV merged unemployment and welfare benefits, fixing the standard benefit for single people living in old West German states (including East Berlin) at 345 Euros per month. This amount was determined based on a statistical survey of income and expenditure of lower income groups. Benefits for other household members were determined as a percentage of 345 Euros.

On 24 April, the European Anti-Poverty Network (EAPN), which coordinates the European Minimum Income Network, launched a bus tour across Europe to raise awareness of the importance of adequate,...

Country: 
Germany
Working Group(s) / Area(s) of Work: 
Women & ESCR
Corporate Accountability
Strategic Litigation
Economic Policy
OP-ICESCR

Liliane Gröninger presented the communication before the Committee on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities on behalf of herself, her husband and her son, Erhard Gröninger, a person with disabilities.   Mrs. Gröninger argues Germany violated Article 3 (General principles), Article 4 (General obligations), Article 8 (Awareness –raising) and Article 27 (Work and employment) of the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (The Convention), through legislation that failed to promote Mr. Gröninger participation in the labor marker.

The Higher Social Court of North Rhine-Westphalia asked the German Federal Constitutional Court to decide whether the cash benefits for asylum seekers provided under section 3 paragraph 2 of the Asylum Seekers Benefit Act comply with the constitutional right to a minimum standard of living.