How can we solve social security
How to get out of the crisis fairly - with a social and ecological system change
Leading motion for the Erfurt party congress of the DIE LINKE party - decision of the party executive committee of August 29, 2020
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Our country is not only facing a federal election and state parliament elections, but also a decision on direction. The corona pandemic not only plunged the country into the deepest economic crisis since World War II. People have experienced firsthand how prone to crises the capitalist system is and how dependent global production and supply chains make us.
The neoliberal certainty that everything can be regulated in the form of a market literally evaporated before our eyes. The corona shock clearly shows that something has to change. We have to change something fundamentally. We have all seen it: It was not the market that regulated protection against the pandemic, but rather the democratic public spirit, the intervention of the state and the solidarity of the citizens that have protected us in Germany from higher death rates to this day. It was not the privatization of everything public and the mantra of compulsory savings that protected us from the worst effects of the pandemic, but it was all those who kept the business going despite poor wages and health-endangering working conditions: in the hospitals, in the care facilities, in the Supermarkets and in general with all public services. It is all those who were inappropriately remunerated and precariously employed before the crisis. You deserve more than applause.
Our country needs a new policy that really wants to overcome deep social divisions.
As a socialist party, we stand for a policy that focuses on people and not on the pursuit of profit. A moderating "business as usual" will not be able to solve the many crises of our time. We can no longer leave the systemic causes intact. The pandemic has also shown that political action can be taken if those involved want to. If social life can be changed so fundamentally within weeks, with such drastic effects, we LEFT ask why the social divide is not overcome in an equally gripping manner? We also ask: Why is there no such quick change of course in the climate crisis?
The current challenges - social security, economy, work, digitization, education, migration, climate and democracy - call for a new radical realpolitik that goes to the roots and is more than a shining facade. Cosmetic corrections will not overcome the economic crisis in our country, stop climate change or stop the radicalized right. In addition, in times of new global conflicts we need a consistent peace policy and a foreign policy that focuses on cooperation and relaxation.
We want to push through left-wing politics, real social and societal progress in this epoch break. It is right to defend every ounce of social progress and democratic freedoms. Now we need courageous steps beyond that: Let's build bridges for a socio-ecological change in policy!
As long as the Union is in the federal government, all social and ecological progress will be blocked. The governments of the past two decades - whether red-green, black-yellow or black-red - have all pushed for the militarization of foreign policy and upgraded the Bundeswehr as a worldwide operational army. They made social and ecological concessions - minimum wages and nuclear phase-out - only under pressure from movements. The SPD and the Greens have to decide whether they want to keep the CDU in government or stand for a socio-ecological change in policy and a genuine peace policy. A socio-ecological change in policy requires that the SPD and the Greens say goodbye to their previous political practice. The SPD has to decide whether it wants to reassign the CDU to the government in the end or whether its departure from agenda politics will be sustainable. The Greens must bear in mind that a progressive climate policy must not come at the expense of employees, retirees and people on low incomes. With the CDU there is no turning away from agenda politics and no socially just climate protection. DIE LINKE is the only guarantee that the doors to social and ecological justice will be thrown open in our country and that the Union parties will go into opposition after the Merkel era.
For 30 years every federal government disregarded the life achievements of the people in East Germany. Whether in terms of wages or pensions, in terms of personnel policy in authorities, courts and universities. We need a boost to justice for good and equal living conditions. 30 years after the so-called reunification and as a result of deindustrialization through the Treuhand policy, the wall stands between East and West: In the East, people earn less, have lower pensions and fewer assets, fewer prospects, fewer opportunities - they face an uncertain future . That can be changed, that has to change. DIE LINKE fights for the life achievements of people in the East to be recognized and for this inequality to be overcome. The people in the country want answers to their questions about what happens next - and they demand social security. DIE LINKE stands by the side of all those who work hard and receive too little, who have no work, whose pension is insufficient, or who feel marginalized and not represented in society. DIE LINKE also stands by the side of educators, teachers, employees in hospitals and nursing homes, and engineers. DIE LINKE stands by the side of all those who keep our society alive.
For DIE LINKE, climate justice and social justice belong together: without social justice, without employment and income guarantees, without disarmament and global international cooperation, we will not be able to implement climate protection.
And without climate protection and a future worth living for everyone, there is no social justice. Without a protective social umbrella, ecological progress becomes the privilege of the better-off. DIE LINKE defends the principle of peace as a mode of international politics and, as a party of international law, stands for sustainable development justice and multilateralism based on solidarity.
A look at global conditions shows which directions things can go in: A new austerity with an authoritarian state like Trump, Bolsonaro or Orbán? A green-painted or modernized capitalism that ignores the interests of the many and creates neither a just welfare state nor the necessary change of direction in the economy? Or is it possible to achieve a real departure towards a socially just, climate-just society?
We fight for a social and ecological system change.
The corona crisis and its consequences are changing the world and our society. Millions of people around the world have had to stay at home for weeks and limit their encounters with other people enormously. We are in the midst of a global crisis in which many crises are intertwined: the climate crisis and the economic crisis, a public crisis, a health care crisis. There is a global recession the likes of which has not occurred since the Great Depression. Many companies and self-employed will go bankrupt. Unemployment is increasing. At the same time the great distribution struggles begin. The question will be: who pays the bill? Will the crisis come at the expense of pensioners and employees, at the expense of public services and the welfare state and at the expense of climate protection? Or do we work together to ensure that the corporations and the super-rich are given a fair share of the costs of the crisis? Huge gaps have been torn in the coffers of the federal, state and local governments. Even before that, wealthy municipalities could afford to invest, while poor ones managed the shortage. The debt brake requires that the loans that are now taken out are repaid. If we cannot push through fundamental changes, if incomes cannot be increased through the equitable distribution of wealth and wealth, there will be deep cuts in our lives. The hospital, music school, local public transport and much more are threatened with cutbacks. The debt brake has to go.
Are we creating the way out of the dead ends of fossil fuel capitalism and climate change, are we creating the entry into a different kind of economy and coexistence? What the world looks like after Corona, after the economic crisis, the course is now being set. We must ensure that the welfare state, that the social and public structures and services and the economic foundations are set up in such a way that they can master these challenges and that the crises do not affect people's lives unchecked.
DIE LINKE fights for a just way out of the crisis.
We argue with the nursing staff for 500 euros more basic salary. We stand by the side of the employees whose corporations want to collect government support and then lay off staff or relocate their locations to low-wage countries. We are connected to the people whose health is put at risk by Tönnies, Amazon and Co. with poor working conditions and poverty wages. We are fighting with Fridays for Future and Ver.di for good public transport for everyone and better working conditions. We fight with single parents for a dignified and poverty-proof minimum income and better childcare. We stand by the side of the cooks, salespeople, educators and everyone who has kept everyday life going.
Good work, good social care and services and a climate-friendly and functioning economy are not a contradiction in terms. They can only be realized together. Together we can change the world if we start now.
Crises were foreseeable even before the Corona. It was already clear beforehand that the auto industry could not continue as before. Before that, representatives of the industry associations had called for government investments and subsidies and tried to reduce the costs for
to pass the necessary innovation on to the public purse. Temporary workers had already been sent home and employees had been put on short-time work. It was already clear beforehand that we can only save the climate if there is a fundamental restructuring of the energy and transport industries. Also in the population has neoliberalism
run down. Many people now know that private is not better than public, but often more expensive and worse - also for employees. Many know that a car purchase premium does not ensure job security or climate protection. Many people share that life should not only revolve around work and that more time and better wages are needed. These shifts are also successes of LINKER politics.
In response to the Corona crisis, the federal government passed the largest package of economic aid and economic stimulus since the Federal Republic of Germany was founded - suddenly there was no talk of the black zero. The program provides incentives for innovations in the automotive and metal industries in order to promote electromobility and decarbonization. It is a modernization strategy for industry from tax revenues that does not affect the structure of the economy as a whole. There is no systematic promotion of collective, environmentally friendly mobility: No measures to switch from aircraft to rail for passengers or freight - but aircraft that use less kerosene are promoted. Those who could not afford train rides cannot either, if prices fall as a result of the reduction in VAT. Those who live largely left behind by buses and trains in the country have no new routes and no higher frequencies to expect. The equity of the railway is increased, but there are no cheaper fares, free rides or Bahncard 50 for everyone.
There can be no talk of social control that strengthens climate-neutral economic sectors, health and care, and personal services. The programs of the federal and state governments completely refrain from linking the granting of aid to large and medium-sized private companies to the expansion of state and trade union control. But that is exactly what is needed. The urgently needed restructuring of the transport industry requires conversion programs with the goal of ecological and social mobility for everyone. The merger or cooperation of Deutsche Bahn and Lufthansa in public ownership can be a first step in this direction.
Corona has changed a lot: Suddenly everyone knew that functioning childcare is indispensable for professions such as nurses, cleaning staff, delivery services, salespeople and truck drivers; the wages and working conditions would not have suggested that. Everyone knew the importance of good health care, with enough reserves to handle a pandemic while delivering vital treatments at the same time. And that hospital groups that work for profit cannot guarantee that. In the streets, people applauded for the great dedication of the employees. Strangely enough, the government also clapped - and did nothing for the workers. As soon as the lockdown was over, the old priorities were back in place: no more penny for care, no collective agreements for the salespeople - instead, Sundays open for sale are required - no need-based financing for hospitals. The state aid, loans and investments
go largely to large corporations such as Lufthansa, Adidas and TUI, which made billions in profits last year. At BMW, employees were paid from unemployment insurance for weeks. At the same time, the company paid dividends of 1.6 billion euros to its shareholders. The government could have imposed conditions, e.g. that the companies should not fire anyone, but did not do so. Lufthansa immediately announced that it would lay off thousands of employees.
In Germany, the number of infections was different than in other countries. Also because scientific findings became the benchmark and because the Bertelsmann Foundation was unable to assert itself by reducing intensive care bed capacities and closing hospitals on a large scale. Short-time working benefits and state rescue measures have saved many millions of employees from losing their jobs and self-employed people and companies from bankruptcy. But the government's claim that it would get everyone through the crisis is wrong. The weak points of the social network became clear. Many freelancers, self-employed people and artists suddenly found themselves left with nothing. It became clear that mini jobs are not covered by social insurance. The government recommended easier access to Hartz IV. DIE LINKE fought for a bridging allowance. Let's fight together for individual social guarantees without sanctions! We are fighting for employment insurance that includes everyone, including the self-employed, in statutory social insurance.
The inventions of the "breathing factory" from Agenda2010 have been experienced first-hand: When the factory "exhales", temporary workers, employees in contract companies and precarious workers are sent into unemployment. Anyone looking for an apprenticeship position has bad cards. An entire generation of people at the beginning of their working lives has been hit hardest by the crisis. The government offers them: nothing. For many, the future has become uncertain after the corona wave: worries about the job, about health and relatives, about professional and private livelihoods. Many suddenly found each other on the street, on strike against relocation, protest against layoffs and closings.
Now the corporations and their political allies are mobilizing: the welfare state can no longer be afforded. They could not pay fair taxes and social security contributions - but they could distribute dividends to shareholders. They demand wage cuts, want to cancel vacation and breaks and send employees on short-time work and unemployment. All under the guise that "we" "all" have to step down in the crisis. But: waiving wages does not create jobs, but exacerbates and prolongs the crisis. And poverty is not a sign of one
functioning economy and a functioning state. A good future for everyone is not created out of renunciation and fear, but rather by distributing wealth, tasks, work and time fairly.Some got richer during the crisis. The gap between rich and poor remains large. The super-rich and corporations will not voluntarily make their fair contribution.
We are at the beginning of great struggles. For this we need the courage of many. And real, fair alternatives. DIE LINKE is ready.
A crisis means a new beginningif we can enforce a different policy. Then we can use the crisis to create good work and a sustainable, climate-friendly economy. We can ensure that workers in industry do not have to choose between the future of their children and a good job. We can create the basis for real social cohesion with a strong welfare state in which what is there for everyone also belongs to everyone. With a new mobility that takes everyone with you. The auto industry wants to carry on as before, maintain direction, at most change the drive. The federal government wants to encourage the consumption of electric cars. But if you do not intervene in the economy, you cannot build and control. Innovation does not arise from the chaos of individual profit interests and an unbridled market. But when the social and economic foundations are there collectively and for everyone. We have to recreate these foundations. We want to create good jobs through more buses, trains and rails, through better healthcare, education and upbringing, through building up the communities. If the tasks of local and long-distance transport, of air and rail transport are in the public sector, meaningful concepts of integrated, affordable and environmentally friendly mobility can also emerge. And we want everyone to know in the future: a job in care and upbringing is worth no less than in the automotive industry. That is why he must not be paid less.
Our way out of the crisis: The social and ecological system change, our LINKER Green New Deal
The way out of these crises must start with the causes. It cannot succeed in solving the economic crisis, the climate crisis and the public crisis by keeping everything as it was. We need the courage, the will and the knowledge for basic, just alternatives. No turning back, no new policy of austerity, not just modernized capitalism, not just the same electric car company. We want to overcome capitalism as a system based on profit and competition, on the exploitation of people and nature. Our alternative is democratic socialism. On the way there we fight for every improvement for the people in the here and now, against every discrimination and expansion of surveillance, for every square meter of cheap living space and every hectare of protected nature. That sounds great and that is necessary. Our guard rails are: public and for everyone, ecologically, socially safe, democratically controlled. We can learn from the Corona crisis that we have to organize the public commons such as education, culture, upbringing, housing, health, public transport, electricity and water supply differently. Leaving them to the market and the pursuit of profit is life-threatening. They must be organized in public, charitable or cooperative property, under democratic control and tailored to needs.
It's time for onenew model of prosperity, a new understanding of social and individual prosperity: the free, equal access to a developed community for all will improve the prosperity and life opportunities for all. The previously prevailing model of prosperity has shifted the ecological, health, social and psychological costs of one's own economic activity and profits onto nature and the social contribution systems. They need to be brought back into a holistic model of prosperity. The new social prosperity model is not based on GDP or the growth of capital and profit. The standards for satisfaction and social happiness are different. This new prosperity is defined by the social and ecological sustainability that the spread of income and wealth is small, that there is no precarious employment and wages below the low wage threshold, that everyone has guaranteed protection against poverty the access to education and professional advancement is the same, that there is little depression of exhaustion. The new prosperity model also includes time prosperity: Sufficient time for relationships, family, commitment and relaxation for everyone.
The new model of prosperity means that everyone has the right to good work and basic social services. We strengthen the foundations of every economy: We invest in the social infrastructure and the climate-neutral restructuring of the economy. In this way, we are creating the infrastructure for a better life and a more crisis-resistant society at the same time. With the growth of public services and collective mobility / local public transport, millions of new jobs are being created. With legal staffing and better pay, we create the basis to end the nursing emergency. We are bringing hospitals back into the public sector and strengthening comprehensive, local health care, including in rural areas. We are expanding local public transport, improving working conditions for employees and making it free for users. There has been a tremendous backlog of investment in education. It can only be reduced with an investment program that ensures that not only every schoolchild has access to a mobile device,
Has data volume and broadband internet. But that the school toilets also work, the school roof is tight, that there are enough teachers and that the gym is not in danger of collapsing.
- Meaningful good work, shorter working hours and wages that ensure a good and safe life pass. In this way, we can also reduce inequality between the sexes by recognizing all of the professions that are really necessary for society ("systemically relevant") and also by being able to distribute the work more fairly between the sexes. We are fighting for a statutory minimum wage of 13 euros - that is the prerequisite for a poverty-proof pension to be earned over a full working life. The wages in nursing must increase by 500 euros in the basic salary. This is also a remedy for the shortage of skilled workers. We want collective agreements to be declared generally binding at the request of the trade unions. That would also help the employees of Tönnies and Co., who are now being moved from contractors to subcontractors, but nothing will change in their wages and working conditions. Employees need a right of veto against relocations and closings of company locations.
Temporary work, work contracts in the core business, fixed-term contracts without any objective reason - they all mean that the risk must be borne by the employees, not the companies. That is the core of the releasing of the Agenda2010. We fight for New understanding of normality in work: unlimited, socially and collectively covered, with shorter working hours and wages and with democratic and operational co-determination. DIE LINKE fights for the four-day week with full wages and necessary staff compensation.
- A peaceful international policy, disarmament and fair trade relations. It is also about the responsibility of the global economic centers towards the poor regions of the world. Arms exports from Germany continue to rise. Instead, we need a new world economic order that deals responsibly and sustainably with the consumption of resources, suppresses the causes of flight and creates climate justice.
US President Trump has escalated the battle for economic interests. He is pursuing a devastating imperial foreign policy. He wages economic wars against China and Russia. Even a city like Sassnitz is threatened with "annihilation" (Donald Trump) by US sanctions if it continues to provide infrastructure for Nord Stream 2.
Some of the US troops are being withdrawn from Germany, but more US soldiers are being sent to Eastern Europe. 20,000 US soldiers will remain in Germany, the US infrastructure in Europe that is essential to the war effort will be retained, including the relay station for the US drone wars in Ramstein.
The danger of war has not been as great as it is today for decades. DIE LINKE stands for détente and multilateral cooperation. Donald Trump wants to weaken international UN organizations, the World Health Organization, the UN Refugee Agency and the Climate Change Conference. Especially in times of Corona, we can no longer afford patents on vaccines and essential drugs that exclude many people and entire countries from use and that make pharmaceutical companies gigantic profits. We want to strengthen the international organizations. In order to secure their independent work, binding grants from rich countries for WHO and UNHCR are needed.
In view of increasing geopolitical rivalries and economic wars, we rely on détente and fair global economic structures and cooperation on an equal footing. DIE LINKE advocates that Germany and the EU not participate in the unilateral sanctions imposed by the United States, which are contrary to international law, but reject them and develop international pressure for their lifting.
Instead of economic war and escalation, we rely on détente and a fair world trade and world economic policy. DIE LINKE will never accept war as a continuation of politics by other means - or a politics that is more of a preliminary stage of the war. DIE LINKE advocates ending all Bundeswehr missions abroad. DIE LINKE opposes the militarization of the European Union: We reject arms cooperation at the European level, such as the development and procurement of a European combat drone. We reject European battle groups, the European Defense Fund amounting to around 7 billion euros and other billions in budgets with which the EU is to be built up as a military actor. We support those who work for disarmament in Europe and around the world.
DIE LINKE will not participate in a government that promotes rearmament and militarization, wages wars or permits combat missions by the Bundeswehr abroad. We want to invest in a good life for everyone, not in war. Instead of increasing spending on the military to two percent of the federal budget, we are relying on disarmament, democracy and peaceful foreign policy. We want to ban arms exports, nuclear weapons must be withdrawn from Germany. We want to drastically reduce arms spending instead of continuing to invest in new armored armies and warships. We demand the dissolution of NATO and its replacement by a collective security system with the participation of Russia, which has disarmament as a central goal. Regardless of a decision about Germany's remaining in NATO, DIE LINKE will, in every political constellation, advocate that Germany withdraw from the military structures of the military alliance and that the Bundeswehr be withdrawn from NATO's high command.
The corona crisis hit the states of the European Union differently. Those who are most strongly affected by the austerity policy initiated by Germany
have suffered the most from Corona. Also because of their broken health system. The economic and political divisions in the EU have increased. Dying at the external borders of the EU and the conditions in the refugee camps are a declaration of bankruptcy for a Europe based on solidarity. The border protection agency Frontex must be dissolved immediately, the right of asylum must be restored and expanded.
In order for the EU to have a future again, economic reconstruction must be combined with a change of course. In view of the global challenges - climate change, trade disputes, armed conflicts - a different, solidary, united EU is needed that stands for humanity, social security and a fair distribution of wealth. We want to mobilize at least one trillion euros for a European investment and spending program. Financing is provided through joint bonds (euro or corona bonds). The financial resources must be used specifically for the economically weaker countries, regions, industries and for future tasks. This concerns a socio-ecological industrial policy as well as areas such as health care, digital infrastructure, education and research as well as the energy and transport transition. No reduction requirements and so-called structural reforms that lead to further liberalization of the labor markets or services may be imposed.
- Social security for everyone, guaranteed to protect everyone from poverty. We strengthen the welfare state through social guarantees and protect all people effectively against the risks of illness and unemployment. We guarantee a good standard of living for everyone in all life situations - even in retirement. We want guaranteed protection against poverty and want to abolish sanctions. In summary we want a guaranteed minimum income from 1,200 euros: Whether unemployment benefits, sanction-free minimum income, training grants or pensions: Nobody may fall below 1,200 euros. With strong statutory minimum wages and generally binding collective agreements, we ensure that companies do not allow their wages to be subsidized by the state. Every child has the right to a good start in life, which is why we support the broad alliance for a basic child benefit of around 600 euros, which protects all children and young people from poverty. Working against child poverty also includes working for longer learning together, for smaller classes, for free hot lunches in schools and daycare centers, for good offers from child and youth welfare such as holiday camp trips that are affordable for everyone.
- Fair climate protection. The focus here is on the rapid exit from coal, an expansion of regenerative energies, an ecologically sustainable mobility transition, the conversion of agriculture and energy-efficient building renovation. We want an energy turnaround that brings energy into the hands of the citizens and strengthens regional cycles.
- Ecological restructuring of industry with conversion of climate-damaging industries, a job and income guarantee and more democracy in the economy. The restructuring of the economy must not be carried out at the expense of the employees. We want transformation education money for employees. It remains a historic task to cope with the climate crisis and prevent global warming above 1.5 degrees. It cannot be mastered without a fundamental social-ecological system change. This also requires a democratization of the economy itself and thus of the ownership structures that guarantee public, cooperative and employee participation. "The perspective is not private capitalism, but economic democracy." (Hans Jürgen Urban) In order to avert the impending bankruptcies and at the same time promote a social and ecological restructuring of the economy, we need a public investment fund. This should not only be available for large corporations, but also for small and medium-sized companies.
- Redistribution of income and wealth is a central requirement of the social and ecological system change. It is not only about the greater burden on the rich, wealthy and owners of capital, but rather about a social system of distributive justice and the development of new forms of property. The 45 richest households in Germany own as much as the poorer half of the population, the richest 5 percent as much as the other 95 percent. In the east of Germany people don't even have half as much wealth as in the west. Societies with lower inequality create more innovations and enable better lives for the many. We want one to deal with the Corona crisis Property levy introduce. We finally need a fair taxation of high wealth by a Property tax and an inheritance tax reformwho also involve the owners and heirs of large businesses and estates in community funding. We want higher income tax exemptions. This relieves the burden on people with low incomes. We need higher taxes for manager salaries and top incomes. In the case of health and long-term care insurance, the contributions are levied on all incomes, so they decrease for all insured persons with low and middle incomes.
We fight for one future plan for the East and one for the future Solidarity Pact for coping with structural change in the regions - from Lausitz to Ruhrpott. A new beginning in the economy is particularly important in the East: with the strengthening of public and cooperative economy, with collective bargaining coverage and old debt funds.
The debt brake is economically pointless and must be permanently abolished.If their guidelines were to apply again now, after billions in aid for the economy, cuts in education, social issues and climate protection would be certain. We can prevent this if millions in profits and millions in assets as well as financially strong and internationally active companies are taxed fairly. The Federal Constitutional Court has set guidelines for the fair taxation of wealth. Governments have not implemented them for over 20 years. It's time.
- Expand democracy, defend fundamental rights and fight racism
In order to slow the spread of the pandemic and to protect the health and lives of many, basic rights were restricted for a time. These were exceptional situations and must remain so. The AfD has massively promoted racist sentiments in the country and strengthened structures of the extreme right. The strengthening of the neo-fascist and extreme right requires a special effort in common struggle. DIE LINKE participates in broad political mobilizations against the AfD and other actors from the extreme right and neo-fascist spectrum. For many, racism is an everyday experience: on the street, in government offices, at work, looking for an apartment, with the police. Not anywhere else, but here. Also within institutions and authorities, including the police. Racism is not a "minority issue". It is an attack on our coexistence, on democracy as a whole.
With the project of authoritarian capitalism in mind, the extreme right is fighting for power and government in many countries. Here and all over the world, the left faces it: clear edge against the right, solidarity with the victims of right-wing violence and building up cultural and social countervailing power. The movements against racism, #blacklivesmatter and the everyday support of refugees are our allies and a hope. The right-wing terrorist attack in Hanau shook the country - the investigative authorities seem strangely unaffected. The murders of the NSU and the involvement of the investigating authorities have not yet been cleared up. NSU 2.0 threatens anti-racist activists with information from the police apparatus. The documented cases of discrimination doubled in 2019. The reports of deaths in administrative custody are alarming. The protests are increasing. There is a systematic problem. Racism is in the structures. The structures have to be changed. Also for the many police officers who want to act in accordance with the rule of law and feel obliged to protect the population. For them, too, the structures must be changed in such a way that everyone can meet this requirement. DIE LINKE stands at the side of everyone who stands up against police violence and for equal rights. We need police reform and thorough clarification of how right-wing extremist circles abuse state structures. The first important measures are the establishment of independent complaint bodies against police violence and an effective anti-discrimination law. Racial profiling and "suspicion-independent" controls must be prohibited. All police officers must be individually marked. Security cannot be achieved by arming the police, but through social security and more money for education, social services, youth centers and much more.
Equal rights for all people also means that those who have their main place of life in Germany must be able to stay here. Anyone who lives here must be given full opportunities to participate. This includes the right to equal social and health security, to unrestricted education, culture and religious and political activity, to housing and professional fulfillment without exclusion. And the right to German citizenship and the right to vote. A society in which everyone can live with equal rights and with equal access also changes us, DIE LINKE, politics and parliaments. And that's good.
DIE LINKE fights in many places. We are an active party that builds on the diverse and courageous commitment of our members. When working for peace and disarmament, against racism and for indivisible solidarity. We invite you to support DIE LINKE locally in the district associations and, as a member, to help determine the future course of the party. For a more social, peaceful and ecological policy. We are committed to a better life locally, in the communities, arguing for educational offensives and free daycare centers. Our members fight for the transfer of water and energy supplies to the public sector, for a coal phase-out and climate justice.
Until the federal election, we will focus on:
- Stop the nursing crisis. Hospitals and nursing homes that generate profits and dividends and are listed on the stock exchange do not work first for the well-being of the patients. That is why DIE LINKE demands: No profits with care and health. We want to move hospitals and care facilities away from the stock market and private sponsors back into public hands! Non-profit and municipal organizations create good, comprehensive and local care.
The financing of the hospitals on the basis of flat rates means that diagnoses that bring in money are made more often and wards that are "not profitable", such as maternity wards, are closed. Hospitals have to be financed according to need and patient welfare.
DIE LINKE has developed a solidarity health insurance scheme that could also finance the hundreds of thousands of additional carers who are urgently needed. For the vast majority of those insured, the contributions would decrease.
- Down with the rents! For years, rents in cities in Germany have exploded. Not everywhere: In Berlin, the rent cap advanced by LINKEN has been in effect since last summer. Since then, rent increases have been banned, a binding rent index applies, and rents that are too high can be reduced. At least 1.5 million tenants will benefit from this. The shouting from the direction of the property lobby is great. Everywhere in Germany where rents have risen sharply in recent years, DIE LINKE wants to put a stop to rent increases and upper limits for rents (rent cap). The rent increases of the past few years must be reduced, the modernization surcharge abolished. We want to withdraw approval from real estate funds. Companies that speculate in housing will be withdrawn from listing on the stock exchange. That puts a stop to large corporations like Vonovia and Deutsche Wohnen. We want to transfer them into public ownership. DIE LINKE is part of the "Expropriate Deutsche Wohnen & Co" campaign!
- For an offensive for buses and trains and free public transport, for better working conditions and better pay for employees - and for more staff. With more lines, more frequent journeys and free public transport, everyone can reach their destination and protect the climate. In rural areas in particular, people are often left behind by good public connections and rely on cars. We want to expand and (re) open routes. Good jobs are created in the planning and production of buses, trains and rails. So that everyone gets to their destination safely.
- We stand by the side of the employees when they want to keep their jobs, against closing and relocating their locations or attacks on their wages and working conditions struggle. We support the unions in the upcoming collective bargaining rounds for higher wages, secure jobs, shorter working hours and better working conditions. Especially now and with a view to the collective bargaining rounds in local transport, at the post office and in the public service, the following applies: waiver of wages and restraint in collective bargaining will not help solve the crisis. At the same time, we are fighting with the employees to upgrade wages, e.g. B. in care and social work, for raising the lower and middle incomes, for the expansion of collective agreements and for the social and collective bargaining regulation of work. Especially in trade or logistics, but also in other industries, it is particularly important to push back precarious, poorly paid and unregulated work and to create new conditions.
DIE LINKE is fighting for a fundamental change in policy
A social-ecological system change will only be enforceable against the concentrated power of the large corporations and against the capital exploitation interests of the economically powerful. No party can do it alone, rather we need broad alliances of the common, a new promise of solidarity from society itself. Working out this is the task of all progressive forces in our society: trade unions and social associations, churches and environmental associations, climate protection and social movements. Many of these actors are already working on the key points of the socio-ecological restructuring. The hope is: we are many. We invite you to join the strands of our work and our strengths.
DIE LINKE is going into the coming election year with determination and fighting. We are fighting at all levels for a shift in the balance of power to the left. We are fighting for entry into the state parliament in Rhineland-Palatinate and Baden-Württemberg. DIE LINKE is missing there: There is no voice for tenant protection and social justice, for educational justice, climate protection and strengthening the public. The Greens provide the Prime Minister in Baden-Württemberg - but neither climate protection nor fundamental rights are moving forward. On the contrary. The green-black state government has rejected a popular initiative for free daycare centers. Free local transport? - Nothing. In Thuringia we defend our position as the strongest party in the state parliament and we defend the LEFT Prime Minister against the radicalized right in the country. We want to emerge stronger from our participation in the Berlin government. We want a change of policy in Saxony-Anhalt and Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania. In the local elections in Hesse and Lower Saxony, we want to strengthen our anchoring locally.
A combination of social justice and effective climate protection, good public services and an entry into solidarity-based economy is only possible with LINKEN. DIE LINKE showed in the government in Berlin how politics works for tenants and how to set limits to corporations like Vonovia and Deutsche Wohnen. With the LEFT Prime Minister in Thuringia, we have promoted free day-care centers and a collective bargaining agreement for public contracts. In all countries where DIE LINKE is involved in government or governs, we have campaigned for the humanitarian admission of refugees. In Bremen, we are reducing public transport fares and ensuring that electricity and water cannot be switched off if the bill could not be paid. We show that a new version of the Police Tasks Act can also strengthen the rights of the population and anti-discrimination. Nevertheless, there are conflicts with the coalition partners SPD and Greens. This shows that left politics has to be fought for over and over again. Even if state governments in which DIE LINKE is involved enforce measures that we reject, we will continue to fight for our political demands.
We want to strengthen DIE LINKE for the coming struggles. We want to become more, we are in the neighborhoods, at the front doors, in front of and in the factories, offices, offices.
If you want to create a society in which corporate power does not rule, you need the power of the many. DIE LINKE has strong allies in trade unions, social associations, in the peace movement, in refugee initiatives and climate movements. We are not just their voice in Parliament, they are with us in Parliament. When we rule, we don't rule alone, they sit with us in government.
Ready for the federal election
The era of Merkel and the grand coalitions will end with next year's general election. The course for the future is being set anew. DIE LINKE will mobilize in the Bundestag election for a fundamental change of direction in social, ecological and peace politics and campaign for social majorities. We don't want cosmetic corrections, we want a social and ecological system change. This requires a strong LEFT - be it in the opposition or in the government - and a broad alliance of social movements.
We are mobilizing for guaranteed protection against poverty and a minimum income that is free of sanctions, a poverty-proof minimum wage, an end to precariousness and the universally binding nature of collective agreements. We want a redistribution of income and wealth, a strengthening of public services of general interest. We advocate overcoming the two-class system in health care through solidarity-based citizens' insurance and want to replace the flat-rate per case with needs-based financing for hospitals. Pensions must enable people to live in dignity in old age. We want a pay-as-you-go system based on solidarity, into which the self-employed, civil servants and politicians also pay. We want effective climate protection through a quick exit from coal, a mobility turnaround and an ecological restructuring of the industry with a job and income guarantee. In order for rents to remain affordable, rents must be effectively limited. And we stand for a consistent peace policy: stopping arms exports, ending all foreign deployments of the Bundeswehr, withdrawing all nuclear weapons from the Federal Republic, disarmament and a new détente instead of further armament and for a Europe based on solidarity that overcomes national egoisms and does not militarize itself further. And welcomes people in need instead of isolating themselves.
In our Erfurt program it says: "DIE LINKE strives for government participation, if we can achieve an improvement in the living conditions of the people. [...] In a government that wages wars and allows combat missions by the Bundeswehr abroad, armament and militarization promotes the privatization of services of general interest or cuts in social welfare, whose policies impair the performance of the public service, we will not participate. "
Our proposals for a fundamental change in policy are on the table. In the election campaign we promote our content and a strong LINKE. Many of these demands are shared by trade unions, environmental and tenant initiatives, social associations and human rights organizations. Many people in our society want social change and political change. A political change of direction takes more than parliamentary majorities. We are committed to a broad social alliance and a fundamental change in social and ecological direction. For us, these are the standards for entering or supporting a government. We put on greens and
SPD the question of whether they are ready to initiate a socio-ecological and peace policy change, instead of leaving the CDU at the control points of government power. DIE LINKE is ready for such a change in policy.
This is what we fight for: not for a corner of the tablecloth, not for a few crumbs from the cake. We want a social and ecological system change that takes back the precariousness of work and strengthens collective bargaining coverage. Who is determined to save the climate and starts an offensive for the public that guarantees poverty-proof income for everyone and secures standard of living in retirement. Fair financing of the health system, which also covers the increase in staff and better pay in nursing, could start tomorrow. Without the expansion of buses and trains, especially in rural areas, and entry into free public transport in at least 15 cities, we will not be able to turn the traffic around in the next five years. A Bahncard 50 for everyone would be an important entry-level project. Without a fair taxation of high wealth, we will not be able to eliminate the misery in public, in education and upbringing. We fight for that. We work together with everyone who wants to go in this direction. On the street and in parliament. In operation and before operation. With movements, unions, clubs and parties. In the opposition and in the government. If you want that, you have to make DIE LINKE strong. Our strength comes from the many, from those who speak out, protest, strike and work on alternatives. Together we can change the country.
Important note from the application commission: Please do not use this version of the lead application as the basis for amendments. Please only indicate the number of pages and the line number from application booklet 1 for the Erfurt party congress!
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