The Allensbach Study: People remain concerned about flight and expulsion
The Foundation Flight, Expulsion, Reconciliation is publishing a study today on flight, expulsion and reconciliation that was conducted by the Allensbach Institute for Public Opinion Research in Germany, Poland, and the Czech Republic. The study was occasioned by 20 June 2015, the annual Day of Remembrance for the Victims of Flight and Expulsion approved by the German federal government; this is the first year in which the Day of Remembrance will be observed. The date is linked to the United Nations’ World Refugee Day and extends the remembrance of refugees to remember the fate of Germany’s refugees and expellees.
One of the study’s objectives was to assess the current significance of the thematic complex of flight and expulsion, 70 years after the end of the Second World War. On the other hand, the study was meant to secure data for the Foundation Flight, Expulsion, Reconciliation’s planned Information and Documentation Centre. The study therefore builds on earlier research performed by the House of the History of the Federal Republic of Germany Foundation, which served as the basis for preparing its exhibition, "Flight, expulsion and integration."
The study comes to the following essential conclusions:
▪ The topic of flight and expulsion - amplified by the current global refugee situation - concerns the German population more today than it did ten years ago.
▪ One out of four Germans has a personal or familial relationship to refugees or expellees. The topic continues to play an important role in the lives of those persons who are personally affected by expulsion.
▪ The majority of the German population greeted the introduction of a Day of Remembrance for the Victims of Flight and Expulsion (53 per cent).
▪ Polish survey respondents grant the flight and expulsion of Germans high significance, similar to German respondents; this value was lower among Czech respondents.
▪ The overwhelming majority of respondents in all three countries viewed bilateral relations among their countries as good or very good.
▪ A majority of Germans have a positive attitude towards the establishment of an Information and Documentation Centre on flight and expulsion.
Monika Grütters, Federal Minister of Cultural Affairs and Chairwoman of the Board of Trustees of the Foundation Flight, Expulsion, Reconciliation, said: "The new Allensbach Study shows that flight and expulsion at the end of the Second World War continues to move people at an emotional level. There is a continuing need for a scholarly treatment of these events. In the face of more than 50 million refugees worldwide, the topic is highly relevant once again. The federal government’s decision to introduce a Day of Remembrance for the Victims of Flight and Expulsion was right and proper, and the positive resonance among the victims, which was above average at 73 per cent, results from the profound need for social recognition of their fate."
A summary of the Allensbach Study is available at: www.sfvv.de