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Ministerial visit in turbulent times: Hubertus Heil visits the Federal Employment Agency in Nuremberg

The Federal Minister of Labour and Social Affairs, Hubertus Heil, has been holding meetings with the BA’s administrative board, board of directors, general staff council and employees to discuss the special challenges presented by the corona pandemic.

25 Sep 2020 | Press Release No. 42

The corona pandemic has turned the labour market and the financial situation of the Federal Employment Agency on its head in a matter of months. The Federal Minister of Labour and Social Affairs, Hubertus Heil, got a better idea of the current situation on the ground today by visiting the BA’s headquarters in Nuremberg, where he discussed matters with the administrative board and exchanged views with the board of directors and employees.

The minister said: “The employees of the Federal Employment Agency and the local branches of the Jobcenter have been pulling out all the stops to tackle the crisis and maintain social peace, and I would like to express my deepest gratitude for their efforts. However, we are still facing great challenges that we will have to overcome together”.

Steffen Kampeter, Chairman of the Administrative Board, has stressed the following ahead of the BA’s budgeting process: “I very much welcome the fact that politicians have kept their word by passing the Federal Budget Act to ensure that the Federal Employment Agency can pay off its debts by the year 2022”. He continued by stating that the BA, employers and employees have made immense financial contributions to offsetting spending levels during the crisis, and so it is right for the federal government to also play its part.

Anja Piel, Deputy Chairwoman of the Board, referred to the situation facing employees: “Die BA’s employees have borne an enormous burden in recent months and there is sadly no end in sight”. She highlighted the need for additional human resources if the burden continues to grow.

Detlef Scheele, Chairman of the Federal Employment Agency, emphasised the multiple challenges facing the organisation as a result of the pandemic: “The board of directors and the administrative board agree that we need adequate financial and human resources to overcome the upcoming challenges. On the one hand, we will have to continue approving, paying out and settling short-time working allowance on a large scale for a long time to come. On the other hand, the job and training market is moving again and we will have to focus our work more on advice, support and placements for people who have lost their job during the pandemic or have been unable to find a job due to the pandemic, for young people who are starting their careers in difficult circumstances, and last but not least for employees who are facing accelerated transformation processes as a result of the pandemic”.

Following his discussions with the BA’s employees, Federal Minister Heil returned from Nuremberg with a sense of optimism: “We’ve been hard at work and we’re yet to overcome the crisis. But we’ll continue to fight for every job, and I’m sure our labour market is in safe hands with the BA’s employees!”

The BA’s financial experts are currently working hard to prepare the budget for 2021, which will be approved by the administrative board in early November.