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Germans on WelfareFrom Weimar to Hitler$
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David F. Crew

Print publication date: 1998

Print ISBN-13: 9780195053111

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: October 2011

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780195053111.001.0001

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Pensioners in the Welfare System

Pensioners in the Welfare System

(p.89) Chapter Five Pensioners in the Welfare System
Germans on Welfare

David F. Crew

Oxford University Press

This chapter examines the experiences and reactions of different major categories of Weimar welfare clients, beginning with “social pensioners” and “small capital pensioners.” However, not all manual workers were covered, such as the following: industrial workers, agricultural workers, employees in small workshops, and women receiving second-class benefits. Pensioners formed organizations to represent their own interests. Social pensioners became a political force. They banded together to form the Central Association of German Invalids and Widows. The National Welfare Decree of April 1924 became responsible for the social pensioners and small capital pensioners. This outraged the pensioners as the decree removed separate special welfare programs for social and small capital pensioners. The pensioner organizations acknowledged that individual families were obliged to support their elderly and disabled members. They tried to establish greater collective rights in place of Individualisierung. But the pensioners' efforts were sabotaged by the Great Depression and the obvious divisions within their own ranks.

Keywords:   Weimar welfare clients, social pensioners, small capital pensioners, second-class benefits, Individualisierung, Great Depression

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