Refugees in Brandenburg an der Havel get their money from the supermarket

Brandenburg / H.Meanwhile, 944 refugees from Ukraine have found short or long-term accommodation in Brandenburg an der Havel. Above all, women with children and the elderly.

Read more after the announcement

Read more after the announcement

564 people live in two shared flats in Flämingstraße and in the former Roland barracks, 380 people live in private quarters – according to the latest figures from the municipality.

The city has already managed to provide almost all refugees with so-called fictional certificates – with which foreigners in Germany can prove that they have a temporary right of residence. This makes Brandenburg an der Havel one of six independent cities and counties in the state that have been able to do so without incident. It also gives people a good sense of security.

This certification is also important for the big change that will happen on Wednesday: so far, the asylum has been implemented, but from June 1, Ukrainians living here will switch to the so-called Social Security Law II, that is, to Hartz Benefits IV. Until the end of May, the refugees received payments of between 330 and 367 euros per month under the Asylum Seekers Benefits Act. As of June 1, people will receive €449 in social benefits as single people or single parents and €404 as partners.

Read more after the announcement

Read more after the announcement

It is no longer the municipality that does the payment, which then recovers the money from the federal government, but from now on via the Jobcentre, which is responsible for this legal area.

This General Manager Michael Glaser emphasizes that this presents the staff with challenges. “Although the law was passed some time ago, it only came into effect after it was published in the Federal Gazette. This only happened at the beginning of the week. That is why we were unable to start any payments in such a short time.”

In order for people to continue to get their money, the Action Center takes an unusual approach: all recipients are given barcodes, which they can redeem at some supermarkets and pharmacies and get paid in cash there – for example at Rewe or DM. However, this was a Tuesday in the community housing not yet known.

From July 1, you should work with timely transportation, especially since Mittelbrandenburgische Sparkasse has also set up non-bureaucratic accounts for refugees.

For people who have not yet been able to issue a bogus certificate due to unexplained procedures, the municipality will continue to make payments under the Asylum Seekers Benefits Act for now and later – when everything is clarified – the difference will be compensated by the Jobcentre.

With the change in social status, newly arrived people are also able to take up work. Unlike refugees from Syria or other countries, they do not need a work permit.

Read more after the announcement

Read more after the announcement

For example, from May 3, the Action Center visited communal housing with different teams and presented and held preliminary talks with refugees from Ukraine. “So far we have not had people in our statistics, this is only the case from June 1. But in addition to the “unemployed” category, there is also the initial stage “looking for work,” which gives a rough picture,” Glaser explains.

Accordingly, 224 adults expressed their desire to work. This was recorded once, in-depth discussions follow. In addition, the issue of language courses in many cases remains to be clarified. In addition, many women have children of school age, so childcare issues must also be dealt with.

But it can also be done unbureaucraticly and quickly, says Soren Kirchner of the Employment Agency in Brandenburg. Refugees have already been placed in the clinic or its subsidiaries. Three women wanted to work in a manufacturing company, so contacting the company in question was enough – and after three days they got the job because they were allowed to show what they could do there.”

By Andre Wersing

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