On September 24, 61.5 million voters can decide on the composition of the 19th German Bundestag and thus the basis for later government formation. From the perspective of single parents, the VAMV has prepared election test criteria and questioned the parties currently represented in the Bundestag as well as the FDP. The AfD has not received our electoral scrutiny because its programmatic demands are fundamentally opposed to our views of a democratic, emancipatory, and diverse society. The answers of the parties are summarized here.
Family policy also for one-parent families?
The VAMV is committed to an equality-oriented family policy, so that mothers and fathers can reconcile family and work well and are at all times able to secure their own existence over the life course. Single parenting incurs considerable disadvantages due to tax and social incentives for earning-up arrangements in marriages to married couples. For example, single-parent families can only pay a relief of € 1,908, while couples with unequal incomes can be relieved of spousal splitting by up to € 16,000 per year. The VAMV calls for a change of system in family policy towards an income-independent basic child benefit scheme, in which all child-related transfers are summarized.
Equal promotion for all children and family forms?
GREEN and LEFT want to go over to the individual taxation of married couples and introduce a basic child protection. The LEFT would like to allow only the transfer of the unexploited tax subsistence minimum between spouses. The Greens want at least already married people still the freedom of choice between individual taxation and child protection or the spouse splitting with child allowances or child allowance. In addition, they would like to supplement the lump-sum allowance with a tax credit for low-income earners. In addition, the Greens plan in the context of their"”Green family budgets", To combine child allowances and child allowances into a basic child protection scheme. A concrete amount for the children‘s basic security of 573 to taxable euro, which is to be constantly adapted to the minimum subsistence, however, calls us only the LEFT. The SPD wants with her "Family rate with child bonus" tax law allow between spouses an income transfer of up to 20,000 euros to recognize maintenance obligations. Each parent would receive a free allowance of 150 euros per child. The amount of relief for single parents should be regularly reviewed and adjusted. Union and FDP are against the abolition of spouse splits and want to increase the child allowance. Who draws child support, should receive after the will of CDU and CSU in the upcoming legislature 25 euros more. In addition, the Union wants "Take measures to better support single mothers and fathers". The FDP wants to enter "Child benefit 2.0", consisting of a fixed basic amount, an income-dependent child citizen’s allowance and possibly vouchers for education and participation, as an independent claim of the child. Working parents promise the Free Democrats a regular adjustment of their tax rate including the allowances, exemptions and lump sums to inflation. In addition, families should be relieved of childcare costs up to the maximum amount tax deductible.
The VAMV advocates the introduction of high-quality, full-time, time-flexible and free-of-charge care and educational facilities. He calls on federal politics to assume more responsibility in educational policy in this regard.
The CDU / CSU, SPD, GREEN and LEFT claim a legal entitlement to full-time care for elementary school pupils. The LEFT also wants a community school in full day, in which all children are individually supported by multi-professional teams. The SPD aims to improve the quality of day schools. All of us surveyed parties want to expand the support capacities and also plead for flexible offers. In addition, they propose different measures for quality improvement in day nurseries such as improved staffing (CDU / CSU, GREEN, LEFT), the qualification of training for skilled workers (CDU / CSU, GREEN). There are different positions with regard to the cost sharing of parents: Only left and SPD want in the daycare, a free education. CDU / CSU and GREEN advocate that the countries social stagger the parents’ contributions. A lifting of the cooperation prohibition between federation and countries for the education range and thus the possibility for the federation to contribute here, is demanded by GREEN and SPD. The FDP is aiming for a change of system in the financing of the entire education system: Parents should receive from the state education vouchers with fixed amounts that they can redeem at public and private institutions of their choice. In this way, the Free Democrats want to create a quality competition between the institutions.
One-parent families, at almost 44 percent, have the greatest risk of poverty in all family forms. This is despite the fact that single-parent employment is high at around 70 percent and continues to rise.
Measures against child poverty and re-measurement of social legislation rules?
The CDU / CSU wants to prevent child poverty with the help of its proposals for a better reconciliation of family and work. In addition to income tax cuts of over 15 billion euros, it also promises measures to support children of long-term unemployed parents on the way to education and work. The SPD would introduce extended child benefit from the child allowance and child allowance for low-income families and make improvements for single parents. GREEN, LEFT and FDP present different concepts for the livelihood of children: The LEFT calls for a needs-based individual minimum income protection without sanctions and cuts in the amount of 1050 €, freedom of teaching and learning aids, free meals in schools and day nurseries and free access for children Mobility and cultural facilities. The "Green family budget" includes needs-based rules for children in SGB II on the basis of a new calculation basis, taking into account mobility, social and cultural participation. In addition, the GREENS, in addition to basic child protection, are aiming for a child benefit for single parents and low-income earners and the elimination of the own contribution for lunch in schools and day-care centers for poverty-threatened children. The FDP wants all tax-financed social transfers to one "liberal citizen money" to which the claimant’s own income is less credited. Poverty-endangered children received next to the "Child benefit 2.0" Vouchers for education and participation, the "unbureaucratic" can be redeemed at sports clubs or music schools.
Needs increase in SGB II?
SPD, GREEN, LEFT, and FDP would introduce a greater need for care for separation children. Concretely, the LEFT advocates that the costs of accommodation for the child and half the children’s rule rate be taken into account in the social law needs of the parent who has dealings with the child. GREEN and LEFT also require that the predominantly caring parent receive the full set of rules for the child.
Protection against old-age poverty?
For a strengthening of the statutory pension and the introduction of a minimum pension plead GREEN, LEFT and SPD. The Left demands a solidary minimum pension of 1050 euros and an increase in the statutory pension level to 53 percent. Also SPD and GREEN want one "statutory guarantee pension over basic security level" (GREEN) or one "Solidarrente" (SPD) to which income from supplementary pensions is not credited (GREEN) or to reasonable allowances (SPD). The specific amount of their required minimum pension is calculated by the SPD at 10 percent above the local basic security level. In addition, the Social Democrats would stabilize the statutory pension at the current level of 48 percent by 2030. The SPD and the Left want to include the self-employed in the statutory pension insurance to finance their pension concepts. The FDP, on the other hand, wants to make private and occupational pensions more attractive through consumer-friendliness, state subsidies for investment types such as infrastructure investments, shares and equity investments as well as partial crediting for basic retirement benefits in old age. The Union would await the results of the Pension Commission, which will prepare proposals for the further development of the post-2030 pension by the end of 2019. The statutory pension applies as "central pillar", Occupational pensions and private pensions are also of "great importance".
Labor market policy
Single-parent women are disadvantaged in the labor market because firstly they are women and secondly mothers. The VAMV therefore calls for a labor market policy that has in mind gender equality and reconciling work and family life.
To provide independent livelihood for mothers?
The revaluation of professional fields in which women are mostly active is basically pursued by the CDU / CSU, SPD, LEFT and GREENS. The proposals vary widely and include the abolition of school fees for health professionals (CDU / CSU), dual training courses in certain occupational fields (SPD, FDP), better pay and career opportunities (GREEN) and other improvements in working conditions (LEKE, CDU / CSU) , In addition, the SPD is in favor of a collective agreement in the field of social affairs and the abolition of exceptions for the long-term unemployed in the minimum wage. The Social Democrats also want one "Pact for decent wages and stronger collective bargaining coverage" bring into being. The LEFT would like "living wages" guarantee and delete the non-binding time limit from the Part-Time and Fixed Term Act. In addition, possible material reasons "strictly limited" and time limits are limited to one year. GREEN and LEFT strive for the abolition of "Mini Jobs" to: The LEFT would introduce a legal right to a minimum of 22 hours per week in the employment contract. The Greens argue in favor of converting mini-jobs into social security employment without a sharp increase in taxes and contributions. The CDU / CSU and the FDP want to maintain the low level of employment and adapt the mini-job limit to the general wage trend. In addition, the FDP would like to orientate itself at the mini job limit at 60 times the legal minimum hourly wage and adjust the sliding zone (midi jobs) accordingly. At present, employment without tax and social security contributions would be possible up to a monthly salary of 530.40 euros.
GREEN, LEFT, SPD and CDU / CSU are demanding a temporary part-time right, with the CDU / CSU wanting to limit this to businesses over a certain size. The SPD would "Family-friendly working time models within the framework of an elective working time" to guarantee. The Left advocates a shortening of the regular working hours with full pay and necessary staff compensation in the companies. In addition, part-timers should, according to DIE LINKEN, receive a general legal right to extend working time, provided that the company has work at an adequate qualification level. Part-time training or a part-time study wants the LINKE u.a. through a parent-independent, repayment-free BAföG amounting to 1,050 euros net. The GREENS also make proposals to improve the individual funding options of part-time and part-time study, including: by a "living minimum wage". Also, the Greens strive for one "flexible full time" with a weekly working time of between 30 and 40 hours, during which employees can determine their own workload. You want the parental allowance with a flexible one "Child time plus" continue to develop by the age of 14 by providing a temporary reduction in working time for parents. The SPD is planning one "Family working time" with compensation for single parents and couples, when mothers and fathers reduce their employment for up to 24 months to 75 to 90 percent of full-time collective or full-time employment. On the other hand, the CDU / CSU and the FDP strive to reconcile work and family life through lifetime working and long-term accounts. According to the proposal of the FDP, overtime, bonuses, remaining leave, special payments, converted fees, etc. should be collected on a long-term account as a credit balance and be retrievable in case of a necessary working time reduction. In addition, the FDP wants to take better account of household services for tax purposes.
Especially in cities, metropolitan areas and university cities, there is a massive lack of affordable housing. Single parents and their children are significantly affected by this segregation, as they are disproportionately low-income.
Measures for affordable housing in inner cities?
GREEN and LEFT want to maintain and expand the participation of the federal government in housing construction in the coming years. Both parties are also making proposals on how federal funds could be used more in social housing. The LEFT also calls for one "effective" Taxation of profits from real estate transactions, the preferential and favorable award of public land for social housing purposes. GREEN and LEFT want to make improvements in the rental price brake, the LEFT wants to introduce the rent brake nationwide and indefinite. The SPD also wants to use federal funding for housing construction beyond 2019 and adapt it to the growing demand for social housing. The Social Democrats would also facilitate the densification of inner cities and legislate the inclusion of housing and urban development policy objectives in public land sales. Home ownership for families they want with a socially staggered "family Baugeld" support. Another direction in housing promotion is pursued by the FDP and CDU / CSU. The FDP announces the abolishment of the rental price brake. Both parties want to stimulate private housing through tax incentives. The CDU / CSU also wants to reduce costs by eliminating costs "superfluously" Develop building codes. Families would support the Christian Democrats in the acquisition of home ownership through a building allowance of 1200 per child over ten years and allowances for children and adults in land transfer tax. CDU / CSU and GREEN seek to reform housing subsidies to better serve their individual circumstances (CDU / CSU) and increase their performance (GREEN).
Children of lone parents can rely only on 25 percent on a maintenance in their due amount. There is a lack of knowledge as to why the dependent child is often unable or unwilling to pay.
Measures to improve the enforcement of maintenance claims?
An improvement in the data on child support advocates CDU / CSU, SPD, GREEN and LEFT. The FDP wants to at least examine the possibility of a study, but explicitly wants it too "voluntary regulations" between the parents "respect", if these do not lead to the social benefits of the child. GREEN and LEFT also want to strengthen the assistance and better equip the youth welfare offices for it financially and personnel. In recourse to defaulters under the Maintenance Advance Act, the CDU / CSU and GREEN advocate examining the establishment of specialized departments, such as the tax authorities. CDU / CSU, SPD, GREEN and LEFT are positive about a survey of the additional costs for the exchange model and extended handling.
The rules of separation, separation and divorce of parents in relation to treatment, maintenance and parental care have a direct influence on the daily lives of children. The VAMV is committed to ensuring that the affected children have more rights.
The right of the child to focus on separation / divorce?
CDU / CSU, SPD and GREEN want to enshrine children’s rights in the Basic Law, which in the opinion of the parties could also affect family court proceedings. In addition, the CDU / CSU wants to work for a better coordination between interim injunctions according to the Violence Protection Act and regulations governing access. The LEFT would like family judges to continue their education on a regular basis.
Change model as a rule model of care by separated parents?
All parties surveyed consider the exchange model – if it does not harm the child’s well-being – as a desirable care model. CDU / CSU, SPD, and LEFT, however, do not want to anchor the exchange model as a legal rule model for the care of separated parents. The SPD stresses that one "Opening of the exchange model by court order with regard to the associated BGH decision" a consequence of social democratic family policy. By contrast, the Left assesses a prescribed change model as not conducive to the child’s welfare. The Greens state that they have “followed with interest” the resolution of the Council of Europe on strengthening the role of separation fathers and eliminating existing discrimination in family law of 2 October 2015. They would like to examine the need for legislative changes after completing the BMFSFJ study on the interests of the child and the right of access. Only the FDP would like to stipulate the change model as a legal rule case and to make necessary adjustments in maintenance, social, tax and pension law and in the legal representation of the child. The liberal "Child benefit 2.0" wants to split them in half between separated parents.
"Every child is worth the same" – Associations launch online petition against child poverty
Berlin, 5 December 2016. "No more excuses! Finally fight poverty of children and adolescents! #stopkinderarmut" – With this joint online campaign, charity and social organizations, together with family and children’s rights organizations, will, tomorrow, draw attention to the urgent problem of child poverty in Germany.
"Especially at Christmas time, it becomes clear how great the shortage is in poor families", emphasize the initiators, who will open the online portal for the campaign on December 6, together with the National Poverty Conference. "Santa Claus and Santa Claus often go around the rooms of poor children", so the Allies. The standard rate does not even include the cost of Christmas decorations and Christmas tree. "We say: That must not be! Together we have to do everything so that children can grow up well! Every child is worth the same!"
The petition of the National Poverty Conference, Workers’ Welfare, Caritas, Diakonie, Deutscher Kinderschutzbund, Deutsches Kinderhilfswerk, the Association of Single Mothers and Fathers and the Future Family Forum can be signed on the Campact portal from today / tomorrow. With their initiative, the associations want to win over a broad circle of supporters who put pressure on the parties in the election year.
According to the initiators, around three million children and adolescents in Germany live in poverty. It’s about giving these children a life with prospects and without exclusion: "We demand a uniform cash benefit for all children, which ensures the subsistence minimum. A good growing up must not depend on the purse of the parents", the petition text summarizes.
More specifically, the petition states:
- The Hartz IV rates for children are too low. They are based on inaccurate bills and arbitrary discounts.
- Poor families must be supported at least in the same way as relieving higher-income families.
- Government support must be simple and easily accessible. At present, many help goes past the families and children who need them.
Diverse actions will accompany the online petition in the election year: "We will follow closely the importance of the elimination of child poverty in the electoral programs, of a coalition agreement and in legislative projects, and of whether and until exactly when and how child poverty in Germany should be overcome."
The petition can be signed by individuals under the following link:
- Political actions
- Protest action “Higher child support even with maintenance advance!”
- Women’s Alliance against old-age poverty
- Alliance requirement to repeal § 219a StGB
- Joint Declaration on Poverty Reduction
- Protest action: Düsseldorfer table
- Survey on the development of the advance on maintenance
- Election test pieces 2017
- "Every child is worth the same" – Petition against child poverty
Model project childcare
model project "Supplementary child care, emergency care and counseling for one-parent families in Germany"
Between 2014 and 2017, the VAMV has with the model project "Supplementary child care, emergency care and advice for single-parent families" supported at three locations single parent. The evaluation shows that closing childcare gaps increases chances of employment and can increase income.
The VAMV demands to close childcare gaps throughout Germany by supplementing childcare and strengthening working time sovereignty. He has published political recommendations for action.
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