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Labor Office Chief Under Fire for Ad Campaign

The head of Germany’s Federal Labor Office has come under pressure for allegedly misappropriating the agency’s funds. Over the weekend allegations surfaced in the media that Florian Gerster spent millions in taxpayers‘ money to improve the labor office’s public image. Gerster and his 90,000 employees are in charge of seeking jobs for more than four million unemployed people in Germany. Gerster recently spent €1.3 million ($1.53 million) on an image campaign that at least one member of the agency's board said it did not approve. Critics are also pointing to the fact that the Labor Office doubled its marketing budget during the past two years from €135 million to €250 million. The office spends more than €50 billion a year to sustain the unemployed -- money critics say should not be wasted on glossy ad campaigns.