The legislators of Germany’s federal states have agreed Thursday on a cost-sharing mechanism to support and integrate refugees escaping the war in Ukraine.
After hours of talks between Chancellor Olaf Scholz and state premiers, it was agreed that Ukrainian refugees in Germany should receive the same level of support as the “Hartz VI” welfare program.
Chancellor Scholz stated that the federal government would provide €2 billion ($2.17 billion) in favour of Germany’s states for accomodating & integrating refugees from Ukraine.
A single recipient of Hartz VI receives approximately €400 per month.
Moreover, refugees from Ukraine will be able to receive basic welfare benefits in Germany as of June 1, Scholz stated.
The addition in Germany’s basic social security system will make it easy for Ukrainian refugees to unify as well as stay in Germany, said Scholz.
By legally adding Ukrainian refugees in Germany’s social security system, it will allow them access to more resources as “recognized asylum seekers.”
Ukrainian refugees will also have easy access to employment and jobs centres, health care as well as German language courses.
Germany has recorded over 316,000 Ukrainian refugees so far, as per the federal police.
German states, including Berlin as well as Brandenburg, had asked the federal government to assist by providing support, arguing states alone should not have to bear the financial burden of supporting the large number of refugees fleeing the war.
As per Berlin Mayor Franziska Giffey, “It will enable people to arrive well here in Germany. Potential can be used, and talents can be fostered, and children and young people can also have a perspective here.”
Berlin acknowledges that up to 60,000 Ukrainian refugees are right now residing in the German capital.
Scholz stated that it is currently “difficult to estimate” how the refugee situation will unfold in the months ahead as the war in Ukraine continues.