Showing posts with label germany. Show all posts
Showing posts with label germany. Show all posts

Sunday, December 23, 2012

Three countries - same story

The annual assessment of hunger and homelessness conducted by the US Conference of Mayors reveals that the number of homeless people in 25 large cities has increased by seven percent since 2011. It also says that about 20 percent of the hungry do not get any help, and that social services are being forced to turn them away empty-handed. Half of those seeking food assistance are families and nine percent are homeless. The survey has also found that the lack of affordable housing, rising poverty and unemployment are the root causes of homelessness among families with children.

The British government’s new benefit cuts that will hit working-age people could be “devastating” and dramatically increase poverty, says leading British anti-poverty charity Oxfam.

“This Bill will effectively mean a permanent reduction of benefits, which could be devastating at a time when a proper safety net is desperately needed by millions of the most vulnerable people in Britain,”
said Oxfam UK poverty director Chris Johnes. “Benefits are already at their lowest levels relative to average incomes since the welfare state was founded and it’s highly likely that this regressive change could lead to an increase in poverty, especially for those people who are already facing a perfect storm of cuts to public services and rising prices.”
TUC general secretary Brendan Barber said the bill is a “naked attack on hard-working families” who should pay the price for the government’s economic failure.

Recent studies show that millions of people in Germany are threatened by rising poverty despite low unemployment rates. 12.4 million people or one in seven people in Germany have been at risk of poverty. Critics argue that the expansion of the low-paid job opportunities, called “mini jobs,” have put the economic pressures on the poorest in society.

Monday, March 21, 2011

who owns north pole - part 27- now Germany joins in

As the Arctic ice melts, Germany wants to make sure its scientists gain unfettered access to the region. They have been hindered by the Russians, and other Arctic nations have been hesitant to cooperate. But Berlin also has its eyes on the bigger North Pole booty: natural resources and sea routes.

What happens in the Arctic in the coming years and decades is everyone's business. The Far North has a decisive impact on the climate of the entire planet. Temperatures in the region are rising at higher rates than elsewhere in the world, which affects people and the environment far away from the Arctic. The German scientists' data are urgently necessary to understand these changes.
"This is why we need access to allow our scientists to move about and work throughout the entire Arctic," says polar scientist Lochte. She is now getting prominent support for her demand. German Foreign Minister Guido Westerwelle, a member of the pro-business Free Democratic Party (FDP), is hosting an international conference on the Arctic in Berlin on Thursday, where the key topic will be future polar research.

However, unfettered access for scientists isn't the only interest Germany is pursuing in the Arctic. From fish to natural resources to shipping routes, the region is of great interest for Germany, according to officials at the Foreign Ministry. The diplomats are worried that the five countries bordering the Arctic -- Russia, Canada, the United States, Norway and Denmark -- plan to divide up the previously ice-covered ocean among themselves. They argue that there is a risk that the Arctic could be completely nationalized when the sea ice melts, providing access to the sea floor. Germany argue, however, that Germany and other countries should also be given a say in what happens in the region. Natural resources that will become much more accessible when the Arctic ice melts are of critical importance for a high-tech country. A similar argument holds true for the possibility of transporting German goods to Asia through the Northwest Passage and the Northern Sea Route off the Russian coast. Germany wants the five countries bordering the Arctic to recognize that other countries have an interest in using the Arctic. For this reason, a representative of China, which pursues interests similar to Germany's, was also invited to the Berlin conference.