Status: 05.12.2023, 15:32 PM
By: Amy Walker
The increase in the citizens' allowance by twelve percent from 2024 has met with criticism. In view of the budget crisis, the traffic light must now save money – and apparently wants to do so with the citizens' money.
Berlin – Since the twelve percent increase in the citizens' allowance from 2024 was announced, criticism has been pouring in from all sides. The reason for this is the gap between the citizen's allowance and a low wage, which has become much smaller as a result of the increase. While recipients of citizens' allowance could expect more money, the minimum wage is not quite as generous: it is to rise by only 2024 cents to 41.12 euros from 41.
In view of the current budget crisis, the substantial increase in the citizens' allowance had come under even more fire. As the Bild newspaper now reports, Labor Minister Hubertus Heil (SPD) is to "review" the increase.
Cut Citizens' Allowance Increase: Heil Should Examine Adjustment
The background to this is the significantly lower inflation rate, which fell to 2023.3 percent in November 2. This was a more significant decline than economists had predicted. The sharp increase in the citizens' allowance was justified, among other things, by inflation. According to Bild, Heil is now to examine whether the lower inflation still justifies this increase - or whether it should be reduced.
This would come as a shock to millions of people who depend on citizens' money. From 1 January 2024, recipients of citizens' allowance expect a standard rate increase of twelve percent or 61 euros per month for single persons.
Finance Minister Christian Lindner (FDP) and Labour Minister Hubertus Heil (SPD) are working on an austerity plan. © Political-Moments/Imago
Criticism of the Citizens' Allowance: Is it still worthwhile to work?
The citizens' money has been criticized for months. The CDU/CSU and parts of the FDP have repeatedly criticised the fact that the incentives to work would be reduced by the citizens' money. However, this is doubted by many economists – the problem is rather that there are too many social benefits that are not coordinated with each other. For example, there are mainly people who work part-time and receive housing benefit, for whom it would often not be worthwhile to work more because of the offsetting of income.
When asked, the chairwoman of the Social Association of Germany (SoVD), Michaela Engelmeier, reacted indignantly: "This debate is indecent: If you cancel the increase now, then you curtail the absolute minimum that people need to live." The subsistence minimum is non-negotiable, and a reduction would be incompatible with the Basic Law.
"Everyone can see how prices have developed since 2022 every day in the supermarket. Poorer households are more burdened by inflation because they spend a larger portion of their budget on food. Inflation here was over 12 percent in some cases," she told IPPEN. MEDIA. The increase should not be "shaken".