Several German trade unions have warned of massive problems due to a looming shortage of staff in the public service, for example in tax offices and in the prison system.
One of the union leaders, Florian Köbler, Chairman of the German Tax Union, who gave the warning Sunday’s edition of the mass-circulation newspaper Bild, said, “The retirement wave of the baby boomer generation is already noticeable now.
“It will intensify massively from 2028 onwards,” Köbler said.
One problem is “unattractive working conditions in dilapidated offices with mediocre pay.”
Salaries in line with the market were needed to increase the number of tax officials.
Köbler warned: “Without sufficient tax revenues, the state risks losing its ability to act.”
René Müller, head of the Prison Officers’ Union, also told the newspaper: “If the situation deteriorates further, we will no longer be able to fulfil our state duties.”
A few days ago, the head of the civil servants’ association dbb already warned of the consequences of an imminent staff shortage.
Although there is no threat of the state coming to a standstill, “there will be a lot more rumbling, more often and louder than now,” Ulrich Silberbach told the newspapers of the Funke Media Group.
“If we don’t finally make progress on digitisation and reducing bureaucracy, the impending shortage of staff will lengthen processing times, worsen support ratios and significantly weaken the state’s overall performance,” he said.
According to estimates by the dbb, there are currently around 360,000 vacancies in the public service.
Going by the estimates, about 1.3 million public service employees will retire by 2030.