Kulmbach – only just under 81 percent of employees in the district who lost their jobs in 2014 were looked after and financially supported by unemployment insurance when they became unemployed. Almost 20 percent, on the other hand, were directly dependent on hartz IV after losing their jobs, according to calculations by the german federation of trade unions (DGB). In absolute terms, 2238 workers received unemployment benefits at the start of their unemployment and 526 slid directly into hartz IV when they became unemployed. These facts showed that the path from employee to hartz IV recipient is shorter than is often assumed. Unemployment insurance security gaps could not be overlooked for long, says DGB district president detlef ramming.
"Risk of impoverishment high"
Hartz IV, stresses ramming, must not always be combined with unemployment benefits long-term unemployment, because even with prior payment of contributions, the risk of impoverishment at the beginning of unemployment is very high. This threatens the legitimacy of contributory unemployment insurance. Many people had worked and paid insurance contributions for a full year, but were unable to do so within the last two years (the so-called statutory framework period) because they were employed on a temporary or permanent basis. In the case of relatively short contribution periods or failure to comply with the framework period of only two years, insurance coverage could not yet be built up. Payments, which were made a long time ago, have not been taken into account here.
The DGB is calling for the statutory framework period within which an insurance claim can be built up to be extended from the current two years back to three years – as was already the case until february 2006. A corresponding appeal was made to the local member of parliament emmi zeulner (CSU).