Germany Plans to Pay Street-Cleaning Alcoholics With Beer

Great. Photo: Fifi Banana / Flickr

A taxpayer-funded project in Germany would supply a steady beer ration to be distributed to homeless alcoholics who log three to six hours a day cleaning city streets. The program, Addict Support Essen's Pick-Up Initiative, is one of Germany's so-called "one-euro jobs," where people pay unemployed and usually homeless workers 1 an hour. The visionaries behind this new initiative credit their visionary Dutch neighbors, who pioneered a similarly controversial program last year that compensates workers in light beer. Not surprisingly, some charitable groups call the idea undignified and exploitative, and while there's no word on ABV  also, pilsners? doppelbocks? The organization pitching the plan says medical treatment and counseling are part of the deal, and argues anyway that without beer, "they would not turn up in the first place." [RT, Related]