Hate Mail for German Health Minister | Germany| News and in-depth reporting from Berlin and beyond | DW | 09.01.2004
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Hate Mail for German Health Minister

German Health Minister Ulla Schmidt has been on the receiving end of threatening messages in the form of letters, faxes and emails following the introduction this month of unpopular health reforms. Some of the letters contained messages such as "You're making us sick," and "You belong in the gas chamber." They were passed on to the Federal Bureau of Investigation, which says it has identified the guilty party. Schmidt's spokesman, Klaus Vater, said the letters began arriving after the tabloid Bild Zeitung ran a headline that read "Ms. Minister, You're Making Us Sick." Government spokesman Bela Anda, a former employee of the Bild Zeitung, agreed with Vater that the paper had gone too far. Schmidt's ministry recently introduced health reforms that include unpopular measures such as reduced dental and eye coverage, as well as additional patient fees for doctor's visits, medications, and hospital stays.