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Housing for refugees - excitement about the eviction of a nursing home in Berlin

The closure of a nursing home in Berlin caused a stir because of the planned accommodation for refugees there.

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Housing for refugees - excitement about the eviction of a nursing home in Berlin

The closure of a nursing home in Berlin caused a stir because of the planned accommodation for refugees there. The Johannesstift, as the operator of the facility in the district of Wedding, justified the closure of the home on Monday evening ("Pflege

WELT has received a statement from the Johannisstift, which speaks of a “very complex situation”. The press release states that the building on Müllerstrasse was leased from 2006, with the option of a 25-year term. From 2021 there were said talks with the owner, the Paul Gerhard Stift. Apparently, he wanted to push through an increase in rent and lease rates, but the operator, the Johannesstift, did not agree with the amount.

The aforementioned “premature termination of the rental and lease agreements” was then agreed. The monastery then wanted to use the building for other purposes, it had been announced. According to a media report, there are still around 100 residents (the first reports said there were 110 people) with consequences. New tenancies had to be found for them, as the Johannesstift WELT confirms.

However, this development has been apparent since 2021, so that from 2022 no more places and apartments were occupied. As the statement goes on to say, the residents, some of whom are in need of care, are supported by social services and the management of the home in their search for new housing.

First of all, the lower part of the multi-storey house can still be used. However, the two upper floors have already been handed over to the owner for another use. According to media reports, the first new tenants, who are said to be refugees, have already moved in there.

The owner, the Paul Gerhard Stift, meanwhile expressly emphasized that the decision to convert the building for those in need of protection who had been traumatized several times had been made after the contract had been changed prematurely. The background to the excitement is a report by "Focus" on the change of use, which, according to the news magazine, is more lucrative than geriatric care due to public subsidies. In a statement available to the media service epd, it is also expressly emphasized that no termination of the rental contract was given to the Johannesstift Diakonie

The pen also rejected the "Focus" information, according to which personal use was registered. The conversion of the nursing home - i.e. the moving in of refugees - is also not an economic decision, but stems "from the existing structures and the needs of the State Office for Refugee Affairs (LAF)". As the "Focus" had also reported, there was a corresponding request from the LAF.

Like many other German municipalities, Berlin is currently intensively looking for housing for migrants and asylum seekers. Indirectly, the request was confirmed by the PGS: Thanks to decades of experience in working with refugees, the Paul Gerhardt Stift will support the state of Berlin with the question of accommodating refugees, it is officially said.

The process has led to numerous media reports. In addition to "Focus", other local newspapers such as "Berliner Zeitung" and "B.Z." also reported. In another article from Tuesday, the "Focus" also writes about the sometimes emotional departure of the old residents. “During the evictions, tears have already flowed among those affected who have been fired. Containers stood in front of the building for days, the furniture was simply thrown away," the magazine quoted a relative as saying.

In addition, the text comments: "It seems bizarre that the whereabouts of elderly people in need of care, who wanted to enjoy their well-deserved retirement in peace and dignity, quite obviously failed due to a dispute between two institutions of the Protestant Church over rent and in the end the senior citizens before the door has been and will be set."

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