Germany: Migrants In, Germans Outby Soeren Kern
The Death of Property Rights
- Hamburg city officials say that owners of vacant real estate have refused to make their property available to the city on a voluntary basis, and thus the city should be given the right to take it by force.
- "The proposed confiscation of private land and buildings is a massive attack on the property rights of the citizens of Hamburg. It amounts to an expropriation by the state [and a] "law of intimidation." — André Trepoll, Christian Democratic Union.
- "If a property is confiscated... a lawsuit to determine the legality of the confiscation can only be resolved after the fact. But the accommodation would succeed in any event." — Tübingen Mayor Boris Palmer.
- Officials in North Rhine-Westphalia seized a private resort in the town of Olpe to provide housing for up to 400 migrants
- "I find it impossible to understand how the city can treat me like this. I have struggled through life with grief and sorrow and now I get an eviction notice. It is a like a kick in the stomach." — Bettina Halbey, 51-year-old nurse, after being notified that she must vacate her apartment so that migrants can move in.
- The landlord is being paid 552 euros ($617) for each migrant he takes in. By cramming as many migrants into his property as possible, he stands to receive payments of more than 2 million euros a year from government.
- "Considering that migrants cannot afford to rent new properties... moves must be initiated in which higher income households purchase or build more expensive accommodations for themselves in order to free up the less expensive housing for migrants." — The Berlin Institute for Urban Development, the Housing Industry and Loan Associations
- "I saw an unbelievable situation: the elderly volunteer lifted the table halfway, looked at the migrant and moved his head asking the migrant to lend a hand. The migrant paused for a moment and then just walked away." — Firsthand account, refugee shelter.