Needy Austrian Nazi Victims Worldwide To Receive Medical Care

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This post is for historical informational purposes only. Please do not refer to this post for information pertaining to current Claims Conference programs. Visit What We Do for current program guidelines and information. Thank you.

January 28, 2008

A supplemental fund to provide medical services for needy Austrian Nazi victims worldwide was secured after successful negotiations by the Claims Conference.

As a result of talks held in late 2007 in Vienna, the Austrian Ministry of Social Affairs will now pay €1.8 million – €2 million annually toward the Claims Conference’s Austrian Holocaust Survivor Emergency Assistance Program, whose previous funding is expiring.

“Only very few Jews managed to survive the war in Austria,” said Julius Berman, Claims Conference chairman. “The majority of these survivors, now elderly, live all around the world.”

Moshe Jahoda, himself a child survivor, who headed the negotiations through the Claims Conference’s Committee on Jewish Claims Against Austria, said, “As Holocaust survivors age, their medical and social services needs increase. We remain focused on issues that are of concern to Nazi victims around the world.”

About 16,000 Austrian Jewish survivors of the Holocaust are living primarily in the United States, Britain, Israel and South America, according to the Claims Conference’s latest statistics.

No individual payments are being made by the Claims Conference from these funds. The new funds will be distributed and used by local social service agencies around the world that provide dental work, hearing aids and eyeglasses, among other assistance.

Applicants must meet all four criteria:

1.) Individuals must be either a Jewish victim of Nazi persecution or have fled Austria to escape persecution on or after July 11, 1936. They, or their parents, must have been Austrian citizens, or have had 10 years of residence in Austria prior to their date of emigration.

2.) Individuals’ annual income may not exceed the limit specified by their current country of residence (income requirements vary by country). Necessary expenses, in relation to income, will be considered in determining eligibility. Widows and widowers of deceased Austrian Nazi victims who were eligible for funding through AHSEAP will be included in this program. Calculation of income to meet the eligibility guidelines shall be as follows:

  • Only the income of the applicant shall be taken into account (not the income of his or her spouse).
  • Holocaust-related pensions; pension payments from obligatory national social security systems; or pensions awarded for reduction in earning capacity, for industrial injury or occupational disease, for loss of life or any comparable payment will not be considered income.

3.) Total of financial assets may not exceed the limit specified for applicant’s current country of residence.

4.) There must be a specific emergency need that individuals cannot pay from their assets and income.

In addition, if the spouse of an Austrian Nazi victim suffers from severe health problems, the survivor may request support for the spouse in the framework of the maximum annual sum that the survivor would be entitled to receive. The request must be made by the survivor on behalf of his or her spouse. Heirs of deceased Nazi victims, other than those described above, are not eligible for this program.

Since 1951, the Claims Conference has negotiated for and distributed payments from Germany, Austria, other governments, and certain industry; recovered unclaimed German Jewish property; and funded programs to assist the neediest Jewish victims of Nazism.

For more information and assistance, contact:

Tzedaka, Buenos Aires

Jewish Care, Melbourne
Jewish Care, Sydney

Belgium and Netherlands
Centraal Beheer van Joodse Weldadigheid, Antwerp

Confederaco Israelita do Brasil, Sao Paulo

Selfhelp Community Services, New York

Reshet, Santiago

Denmark, Finland, Norway and Sweden
Jewish Community of Stockholm

Foundation CASIP-COJASOR, Paris

Germany and Switzerland
Zentralwohlfahrtsstelle der Juden in Deutschland, Frankfurt am Main

Association of Jews from Central Europe, Tel Aviv

United Kingdom Association of Jewish Refugees, London

United States
Selfhelp Community Services, New York

Fundacion Tzedaka del Uruguay, Montevideo

Rest of the world:
Claims Conference, Vienna