With a deeply symbolic decision, the Bundestag (German parliament) agreed on January 27, the International Holocaust Remembrance Day, on a monthly pension of 291 euro for those who were forcibly sterilized and the victims of the euthanasia-campaign (Euthanasie-Geschädigte) under the National Socialist regime. Following years of discrimination, this group of victims was full of hope that they would finally see the approximation of compensation payments in accordance with the BEG (German Restitution Laws).
On April 1, 2011, the Federal Law Gazette published a change in the AKG-Härterichtlinien (the guideline on hardship for the General Law on the Consequences of War).
In the meantime, those who were forcibly sterilized receive their raised monthly compensation payment. But the victims of the euthanasia-campaign, like children of parents who were murdered through euthanasia, experience new segregation by the ministry or rather the executing government agency. They refuse to pay the enacted current payments to the victims of the euthanasia-campaign. According to the ministry and the executing government agency, only survivors of the murder program – there might be five or ten people left, at most – are entitled to this monthly payment. While the guidelines concerning the children state damnification by crimes of euthanasia as precondition for payments, the current Härterichtlinie (guideline on hardship) does not recognise them as victims of the euthanasia-campaign. Multiple paged documents were sent out to the applicants who are well advanced in age. They had to disclose their financial circumstances, only to learn that they would not receive a pension.
This treatment unsettles and offends the victims and constitutes another discrimination of the children of those who were murdered. Among our more than thousand members of the Alliance of Victims of the Euthanasia-Campaign and Forcibly Sterilized, there is only one member still alive who survived the murder program! Of the highly traumatized children of those who were murdered (about 300,000 victims of euthanasia), the statistics of the Federal Ministry of Finance (BMF) report only 269 applications that were sent until 2005.
Why are deeply symbolic memorial days used to decide on rules and changes of guidelines in the parliament, if the ministry and the government agency do not implement them in favour of the victims? This kind of behaviour does not appropriately acknowledge the victims, it is a political disgrace. We expect that the announced payments will be made to all victims of the euthanasia-campaign.
For the Arbeitsgemeinschaft Bund der Euthanasie-Geschädigten und Zwangssterilisierten (Consortium Alliance of the Victims of the Euthanasia-Campaign and Forcibly Sterilized)
AG Bund der Euthanasie-Geschädigten und Zwangssterilisierten
c/o Verein Gegen Vergessen – Für Demokratie e. V.
Tel.: +49(0)30 – 26 39 78 3
Fax +49(0)30 – 26 39 78 40