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Wealthy country, poor pensioners: Old age poverty in Germany

June 22, 2024

Gisela, Inga and Ulrich are pensioners and constantly short on cash even though they worked as much as they could. Why is it that in a country that is known for social welfare and high wages, some older Germans are left penniless?


One out of five pensioners in Germany is considered to be at risk of poverty. Among women, the figure is even higher. The reasons vary. Gisela had decided to take care of her elderly father, which means she couldn’t make enough payments into the pension fund. She’s feeling the consequences now, as she has to count every penny. Inga is in a similar situation. She had an accident that stopped her from working fulltime. Now she’s trying to save money wherever possible, especially on groceries. Ulrich was self-employed and earned well. But then his business went bust, and his savings are gone. Three different life stories, one problem: With retirement came poverty. A film by Tessa Clara Walther and Melina Grundmann.

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About the show

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