The announcement of unemployment figures on March 5, 1998, gave labor unions an occasion to organize protest campaigns in 200 German cities. Demonstrations in front of Deutsche Bank branch offices, chambers of commerce and industry, businesses, and CDU offices were on the agenda. In February 1998, employment agencies counted about 4.82 million unemployed. The structural problem of mass unemployment also became a topic in the 1998 Bundestag election campaign.
Photo: on March 5, 1998, unemployed people gathered in front of Erfurt’s department of trade and industry to protest rising unemployment in Thuringia. Their poster reads: “We want ‘to be active,’ not unemployed.” Photo: Heinz Hirndorf.