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January 15, 2009 - Image 24

Resource type:
Text
Publication:
The Detroit Jewish News, 2009-01-15

Disclaimer: Computer generated plain text may have errors. Read more about this.

Metro

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Attorney Josh Moss of Barris, Sott, Denn and Driker helps a Holocaust
survivor apply for reparations.

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fter more than 60 years,
Holocaust survivors who
worked in German-con-
trolled ghettos may be eligible to
receive new reparations from the
German government.
During World War II, Germany
established hundreds of ghettos
throughout Europe to confine and
isolate Jews and later as a mechanism
for deporting millions of Jews to con-
centration and death camps as part of
Hitler's Final Solution.
In order to survive, many Jews
worked in deplorable conditions in
return for the basic necessities of
life. Some cared for children and the
infirm; others cleaned streets and
buildings and still others performed
arduous manual labor.
Survivors who performed work
in these ghettos are now eligible for
reparations under a program estab-
lished by the German government in
late 2007 — the German Ghetto Work
Payment Program. To quality for these
reparations (totaling 2,000 Euros, or
approximately $3,000), survivors only
need to have "voluntarily" worked in
one of the many German-controlled

ghettos. Survivors do not have to have
been paid for the work and repara-
tions will be paid even if the survivor
only worked in a ghetto for a few days.

Joining Forces

Because the applications are complex
and can be hard to understand, two
local law firms — Honigman Miller
Schwartz and Cohn LLP and Barris,
Sott, Denn and Driker PLLC — have
joined with Jewish Family Service of
Metropolitan Detroit to help survivors
complete the reparations applications.
According to Douglas Salzenstein,
a partner at Honigman, "JFS was a
natural partner, given their long his-
tory of helping Holocaust survivors
in the community. Together, we have
established a plan to locate survivors
in the community and then set up
clinics, staffed by local attorneys free
of charge, to assist survivors with their
applications."
Recruiting volunteers has not been
difficult. "We have so many people
who want to participate," said Todd
Mendel, a partner with Barris, Sott.
Attorneys from several other law
firms, including Steinhardt, Pesick

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