Juso CEO Kevin Kühnert has demanded that sanctions against the unemployed be abolished. The debate about changes in Hartz IV in his party SPD he perceived as a liberation, he told the news agency dpa. He was for positive incentives to motivate people better for a job search. "If people stick to their deadlines and make appointments, you could, for example, talk about reductions in public transport," he said. "Often, too much was demanded and the funding was not enough."
In order to activate people more intensively, incentives are more motivating than instructive threats. "The job center should no longer be perceived as a place of fear for young people," said Kühnert. The topic of a new basic security will also be central to the Juso Federal Congress in Dusseldorf, which begins today. At the congress, which ends on Sunday, the SPD leader Andrea Nahles is expected.
She too is now in favor of overcoming Hartz IV. Above all, Kühnert describes her idea of bringing children completely out of the system of basic security as a liberation – they should not continue to grow up with the Hartz IV stamp. "She used the term basic child protection, I assume that we can do something like that," said Kühnert. Even "debilitating debates" about raising child benefits would be a thing of the past. So far, there has been a compulsion to include additional cash and in-kind benefits, which eliminates child benefit increases for financially weaker families.
Currently about six million people receive social benefits under the Hartz IV system. Hartz IV recipients face sanctions and cuts if they do not comply with job center calls. "Even if it affects only three percent of the recipients, this is a permanent sword of Damocles hanging over everyone," said Kühnert.
Kühnert was elected a year ago with 75 percent to the new Juso chief, the term of office is two years. As an opponent of the grand coalition, he sharpened the profile of the Jusos with, among other things, the NoGroKo campaign. According to nationwide surveys, he is regarded as a pioneer of the SPD renewal.