Religion Past and Present

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Social Welfare
(374 words)

[German Version]

is secondary, non-contributory public assistance to needy individuals. The oldest form of social benefit (Social safety net, Social security), it developed out of poor relief (Poor, Care of the), with roots going back to the public law codes and poor laws of the 15th and 16th centuries. Today the function of welfare is no longer just to guarantee the minimum necessities of life. It is intended to put the recipient in a position to live a life commensurate with human dignity. In Germany the Federa…

Cite this page
Muckel, Stefan, “Social Welfare”, in: Religion Past and Present. Consulted online on 05 October 2023 <>
First published online: 2011
First print edition: ISBN: 9789004146662, 2006-2013

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