“Sexual Abuse in the Family Environment” and the “Additional Help System in the Institutional Sector” Funds
To support victims and survivors in the alleviation of the consequences of sexual abuse, on 1 May 2013 the federal government set up the “Sexual Abuse in the Family Environment” as the “Additional Help System”.
Who is the family for the family circle intended for?
Who have been sexually abused in their childhood or youth within the family circle and who still suffer from the consequences today. Included in the “close family circle” are not only parents, grandparents and siblings, but also people in the family environment, e.g. the partner of the mother or the baby sitter. In the close range of people who are included in the guidelines for benefits, which can be downloaded from the website (in German). Or the benefits under the Victims Compensation Act (OEG).
Which funds can be applied for?
The fund “Sexual Abuse in the Family Environment” offers various possibilities to supplement the statutory social system. A maximum of € 10,000 per person is available for these so-called “benefits-in-kind”. Up to this limit, in parallel:
- Psychotherapeutic support:
- Continuation of psychotherapy once the health insurance funding is exhausted
- Advance or bridge financing at the start of psychotherapy
- Meeting the costs of psychotherapy which will not be paid by the health insurance
- Meeting the costs of recognised specialist therapies (including movement, music ergo, art and animal therapies).
Can other victims and survivors receive help?
Abuse in the Family Environment fund. Therefore, the “Additional Help System in the Institutional Sector” is available to them, as well as the institutions participating in this help system.
Up-to-date information on the participating institutions can be viewed on the website (in German). Victims and survivors who were as well as sexually abused in the family circle were thus sexually abused by a non-family member (so-called external offender), as well as those who were sexually abused both in a family and institutional setting, can So receive benefits from the Sexual Abuse Fund.
In all cases, victims and survivors should discuss their questions regarding the “Additional Help System” individually with an expert.
Which institutions are part of the help system?
Originally, applications to institutions could only be made until 31 August 2016. The Federal Government and several other institutions, however, extended the application deadline. Applications to the following institutions can be made after 31 August 2016 (up until the dates in brackets):
- the German Bishops Conference (31.12.2019)
- the German Conference of Superiors of Religious Orders (31.12.2019)
- the German Protestant Church including the German Diakonia (31.12.2019)
- the German Red Cross (to the reform of the Victims Compensation Law)
- the German Child Protection Agency (31.12.2019)
- the Workers’ Welfare Association (31.12.2020)
- the German Caritas Association (31.12.2019)
- the Free and Hanseatic City of Hamburg (31.08.2017)
- the federal state of North Rhine-Westphalia (31.12.2017)
- the federal state of Berlin (31.12.2017)
- the federal state of Brandenburg (until further notice)
- the Free Hanseatic City of Bremen (31.12.2017)
The Federal State of Berlin is a member of the GDR.
The current overview on the Additional Help System Fund “Sexual Abuse” can be found at www.fonds-missbrauch.de (in German).
Funds for Former Institutionalized Children
Many children and adolescents experience terrible suffering and injustice in care institutions in the former Federal Republic of Germany and the German Democratic Republic. 1949 and 1975 (Institutional Care West Fund) and in the German Democratic Republic between 1949 and 1990 (Institutional Care in the GDR fund) through Counseling and accessing possible benefits from the funds. The application period for the Institutional Care in the GDR fund expired on 30 September 2014 and the Institutional Care West Fund expired on 31 December 2014. New applications are no longer accepted.
The present help and insurance system provides assistance to victims and survivors with both funds, providing traumatization, other adverse effects and consequential damages from institutional care. In addition, victims and survivors should be assisted in processing the time spent in institutional care. In cases where social insurance contributions have not been made in the pension entitlement, financial compensation should be provided with the assistance of the fund.
Further information can be found at www.fonds-heimerziehung.de (in German).
Victims and survivors who were sexually abused in the family can thus apply to the fund “Sexual Abuse in the Family Environment”. Victims and survivors from institutions which are participating in the Additional Help System in the Institutional Sector can apply there. The Institutional Care West Fund or the Institutional Care in the GDR Fund. Benefits can only be granted from one of the funds.
Further information on the “Additional Help System” / “Sexual Abuse” can be found at www.fonds-missbrauch.de (in German).
Recognition and Assistance Foundation
Inpatient institutions for the disabled or psychiatric institutions, there were many cases of suffering and injustice in the past. Many people who were housed there as children or adolescents still suffer today from the consequences, e.g. unjust coercive measures, violence, punishment, humiliation or financial losses because they worked in jobs where social security contributions were mandatory but where contributions to the pension fund were not made. To support these people, the government, federal states and the Church set up the Recognition and Assistance Foundation.
Applications to the Foundation can be made until 31 December 2019. The following prerequisites must be met:
- the person concerned was housed as a child or adolescent (before reaching the age of legal majority) in an inpatient institution for the disabled or psychiatric institution,
- the in-care placement occurred between 23.05.1949 and 31.12.1975 in the Federal Republic of Germany or between 07.10.1949 and 02.10.1990 in the German Democratic Republic,
- during the in-care placement, the person experienced individual suffering and injustice and still suffers from the consequences of this today, or
- in the forums, without social security contributions being paid.
The Foundation provides support through the professional recognition and recognition process, as well as the recognition and assessment of scientific inquiry.
The financial assistance includes a one-off lump-sum payment of $ 9,000 for self-determined use and, for victims and survivors who worked in jobs where social security contributions were mandatory, a one-off pension compensation payment.
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