Wednesday, October 12, 2016

German Cabinet Approves Draft Law to Curb Welfare Payments for EU Migrants - WSJ

Proposed ban on payments for nonworking EU migrants comes amid growing public disquiet with open-door migrant policies

BERLIN—Germany on Wednesday moved to curb social benefits for citizens from other European Union countries in a bid to prevent migrants abusing its generous welfare system.

EU migrants who have never worked in the country won’t be able to enjoy most social and unemployment benefits for the first five years here, according to a draft law approved by the cabinet Wednesday.
The law seeks to clarify confusion over recent court rulings. A German federal court ruled recently that nonworking EU migrants were entitled to social benefits after six months in the country, but the EU’s top court had ruled in a previous case that Germany was allowed to deny social benefits to EU nationals.

Germany’s tougher line on welfare for EU migrants comes asGerman towns are struggling with the financial burden of caring for last year’s influx of refugees and migrants, and the government is trying to quell growing discomfort in the country with Chancellor Angela Merkel’s open-door migrant policies that have boosted the popularity of the populist, anti-immigrant Alternative for Germany party.

The AfD scored unprecedented electoralwins in recent state elections amid voter concern since Germany received nearly one million migrants and refugees last year.

The ban on benefit payments for nonworking EU migrants also comes against the backdrop of European leaders preparing for tough negotiations with the U.K. regarding its exit from the EU.

Welfare benefits for EU migrants were a central theme in the debate in the run-up to the Brexit referendum in June. In his campaign for Britain to remain in the EU, former British Prime Minister David Cameron had sought to limit welfare benefits for EU citizens. His successor, Prime Minister Theresa May, has said she will makecurbing migration her priority when negotiating the U.K. exit from the bloc.

In Germany, the new law seeks to discourage EU citizens who under EU rules are allowed to work anywhere in the bloc from moving to Germany to live off social benefits, without working. - Read More
German Cabinet Approves Draft Law to Curb Welfare Payments for EU Migrants

Overburdened German Cities Tell Refugees to Move Out - WSJ


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