BFederal Minister of Labor Hubertus Heil (SPD) welcomed the decision of the Lower Saxony municipalities to refrain from demanding money back from Hartz IV recipients because of the 9-euro ticket. “Lower Saxony and almost all federal states are on the right track, and that is also the legal opinion of the Federal Ministry of Labor,” Heil wrote on Twitter on Saturday. The minister comes from Peine in Lower Saxony and has represented the constituency of Gifhorn-Peine in the Bundestag for many years.
According to media reports, in some federal states such as Baden-Württemberg, job centers can claim back the difference between the more expensive tickets that have already been reimbursed and the 9-euro tickets. Specifically, it is about student tickets for recipients of basic security. However, the municipal associations in Lower Saxony had pointed out on Friday that Hartz IV recipients would not have to fear money reclaims from the job centers because of the 9-euro ticket.
The Paritätische Wohlfahrtsverband had appealed to the federal states not to make any claims against Hartz IV families because of the 9-euro ticket. “The way poor families are treated in a cold-hearted, bureaucratic and completely lacking in empathy is simply shabby and unworthy of a welfare state,” criticized general manager Ulrich Schneider on Friday in Berlin.