Mayor Florian Hartmann: “The buildings with their historical burden can be used for a socially meaningful purpose.”
Here is the full article by the Tablet's Hannah Vaitsblit:
Buildings that were part of an herb garden at the former Dachau concentration camp are now home to 50 homeless people seeking refuge in Germany, reported the AFP on Tuesday. The herb garden is not part of the concentration camp memorial. In a statement, Florian Hartmann, the mayor of Dachau, which is reportedly going through a housing shortage, acknowledged the historical irony of re-purposing the buildings as a homeless shelter, but stressed the need to assist “the weakest members of society” by allowing the buildings to assume a “useful social role.” In an email to The Guardian, Hartmann wrote:
The buildings in the herb garden are used to house people who can’t afford a flat at market rates. They’re the more vulnerable members of our society. In that way, the buildings with their historical burden can be used for a socially meaningful purpose.
According to the International Business Times, “the German government has said it expects 800,000 people to seek asylum in Germany this year, as Europe struggles to cope with a huge influx of people fleeing war and poverty in countries in the Middle East, Asia and Africa.” Hartmann, however, would not specify whether any of the persons given shelter at the former concentration camp are those fleeing from Syria or elsewhere.