You fled from war and calamity and started a new life in Germany. Now the refugees are threatened with a sudden move on the premises of the Karl Bonhoeffer Psychiatric Clinic.
By Jonannes Malinowski and Isabell Pfannkuche
216 Afghans, Turks, Iranians and Iraqis live together here. Hanspeter Heidrich (78), volunteer German teacher, says: “There is a real community here: a sewing room, a men’s and a women’s café, a school work group, a picture book cinema.”
Now the bad news: The State Office for Refugees (LAF) is asking residents to move to accommodation all over Berlin.
The reason: Because of the corona pandemic, 50 to 60 newcomers have to be quarantined every day. The Bonhoeffer site is best suited to accommodate them centrally and to ensure the necessary distance. The consequence for the old residents: space problems.
Heidrich: “All social contacts will be torn apart.” The refugees have to move, they are not allowed to take anything with them. For hygienic reasons, carpets and bed linen must be disposed of.
Nurse Amida Haziguliyewa (35) from Azerbaijan and her husband Natig (43) should also leave. “We have been living here with our two sons for a year and a half. Our children have to change schools again and I have to change my German course. It is very important to me to learn German so that I can soon work in Berlin. ”
Majida Hassan (28), housewife from Iraq: “You have not yet told us which accommodation we should go to. My husband and I have been living here with our little daughters for two years. ”
What does the authority say about the situation?
“We are aware that this decision in connection with the pandemic is not immediately met with understanding,” said a spokesman. “We regret that due to this extraordinary location and the haste associated with it – contrary to our other efforts – it was not possible to find new accommodations for all residents near the social room.”
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But he also promises: If possible, all families from the accommodation should be allowed to stay in Reinickendorf. President Alexander Straßmeir (56) made the situation a top priority.