Fewer Hartz IV children live in Germany

Almost 2 million children lived on Hartz IV benefits in 2018. That was 4 percent less than in 2017. The proportion of children affected is higher in the east than in the west, but it is highest in a western German state.

A 24-hour day-care center in Schwerin that aims to help single unemployed people to find a job.

Dhe number of children in Germany who live on Hartz IV benefits has declined. At the end of 2018, 1.95 million minors lived in Hartz IV benefit communities, as the newspapers of the editorial network Germany reported on Saturday, citing figures from the Federal Employment Agency. This corresponds to a decrease of 3.7 percent compared to the end of 2017. At that time, the number of children living on Hartz IV was still 2.037 million.

According to the report, children of single parents were particularly often dependent on Hartz IV benefits. At the end of 2018, this affected almost 887,000 children. Across Germany, the proportion of people under the age of 18 who received state support was 14.4 percent. In West Germany it was 13.5 percent, in the East German federal states it was 18.4 percent.

The aid rates differ considerably depending on the federal state: In Schleswig-Holstein 15.7 percent of children under 18 were dependent on Hartz IV, in Lower Saxony 15 percent, in North Rhine-Westphalia 19 percent, in Berlin 28.5 percent and in Saxony-Anhalt 20.3 percent. In Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania the value was 17.4 percent, in Saxony 13.5 percent and in Brandenburg 13.7 percent. The highest rate of help for children under 18 was nationwide at 32.1 percent in Bremen.

The left-wing politician Sabine Zimmermann, who had evaluated the figures from the employment agency, called it shameful “that so many children are affected by financial problems”. The federal government must finally present a concept against child poverty, said the labor market spokeswoman for the left parliamentary group. “The benefits for children must be increased and an independent basic child protection scheme introduced.” Child poverty is about the poverty of the parents: “We need wages that you can live on and support your family.