Thursday, May 24, 2018

The Merkel effect? Ghettoisation increased significantly in 80% of investigated German cities

A new study of the Wissenschaftszentrum Berlin for Social Research (WZB), shows that ghettoisation is increasing in Germany, newspaper Die Welt reports. The social researchers studied 74 cities in the period from 2005 to 2014 in what they call the most comprehensive study to date.
Poor people increasingly live concentrated in certain neighbourhoods. Even young and old people are less and less neighbours, the WZB study shows.
The trend is particularly evident in Eastern Germany, where a lot of cities have areas with large concentrations of prefabricated buildings. The researchers used official information on the concentration of people who live on benefits, the so called Hartz IV recipients.
In 80 per cent of cities, the spatial concentration of people who are Hartz IV recipients has increased significantly. It was strongest where many families with small children and already many needy people live.
“So far, we only know this level from American cities,” says study leader Marcel Helbig. It was “historically unprecedented” how the socio-spatial division in East German cities had increased within a few years.
As a long-term way out for local communities, the authors of the study recommend providing new housing in better locations with strict conditions for a share of social housing.
Angela Merkel, who now serves her fourth term, became Germany’s chancellor in 2005. While she’s spending billions on refugees, she clearly didn’t invest enough in creating good housing conditions for the Germans.

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