Child Holocaust survivors to be compensated

Survivors who were chidren during the war will be compensated for their “lost childhood.”

By
May 27, 2013 18:04
1 minute read.
Gad Beck and his sister as children

Gad Beck and his sister as children 370. (photo credit: Courtesy of Judith Kessler)

 
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Germany recognizes and will provide compensation to Holocaust survivors who were children during the war, for their “lost childhood,” the Center of Organizations of Holocaust Survivors in Israel announced this week.

The move was the result of negotiations recently held in Jerusalem between representatives of the Claims Conference as well as heads of NGOs dedicated to survivors and a senior delegation from the German Finance Ministry.

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The survivors concerned include those born between January 1928 and May 1945, for whom the first period of their lives would have been under the Nazis or allies of the Nazi regime.

They lived in camps, ghettos, in hiding or constantly on the run.

“This is certainly a significant step forward,” said Colette Avital, chairwoman of the Center of Organizations of Holocaust Survivors in Israel, in a statement. “I hope that the German government will do historical justice on this issue and will work to develop a rapid and adequate compensation to those children, who today are grandparents, and ensure that they will receive what they deserve in order to live the rest of their lives in dignity.”

According to the center, children of the Holocaust were deprived of a particularly important period of their lives in which they build their personalities and must be loved, protected and feel safe in their immediate environment.

The center wrote that “lifelong irreparable damage on the psychological and social level” was made to these survivors, who were also hurt in the field of education and culture and were exposed to severe trauma leading to disorders such as anxiety, insomnia or mental instability.

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The center also stressed that some also endured physical trauma as they suffered from diseases related to the conditions in which they lived at the time.

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