This account is pending registration confirmation. Please click on the link within the confirmation email previously sent you to complete registration.
Need a new registration confirmation email? Click here
Stocks Under $10 with 50-100% upside potential - 14 days FREE!

Ex-Nazi Shrine Turns To Immigrants For Salvation

By KERSTIN SOPKE

WUNSIEDEL, Germany (AP) â¿¿ A small town in Germany that once was a pilgrimage site for neo-Nazis is now welcoming jobless foreigners with open arms.

A dozen Spaniards affected by record unemployment in their home country have made their way last year to Wunsiedel on the German-Czech border. The town, nestled in the north Bavarian hills mountains, was best known as the burial place of Adolf Hitler's deputy Rudolf Hess, drawing annual far-right marches until authorities put a stop to them in 2005.

Now Wunsiedel has become an example of how the jobless of southern Europe can be helped to find work in the north, where low birthrates and continued economic prosperity have created a labor shortage.

Wunsiedel needs to recruit outsiders because the town's population is shrinking â¿¿ just 9,500 live here now. The town wants to grow again and needs to reach at least 10,000 inhabitants to turn the downward trend around.

Bernd Birke, the owner of an electrical firm in Wunsiedel â¿¿ where the unemployment rate is 5.6 percent â¿¿ traveled to Padron in Galicia in Spain â¿¿ where about one in four people are out of work â¿¿ in March 2012 to find workers willing to relocate to Germany.

Last year alone, almost 19,000 people emigrated from Spain to Germany.

Birke needed more trained electricians than he could find at home. But he didn't expect the overwhelming response he got from the unemployed in Padron.

"We went to Spain with a queasy feeling," said Birke. "Nobody had any kind of experiences with such a project, whether it could be successful or not."

More than 200 people desperate to find work gathered in Padron's town hall, and each vacancy received several applications on the spot.

The plan to recruit workers in crisis-hit Spain was hatched by Bernd Schoeffel, Wunsiedel's deputy mayor. Schoeffel recalled how about 30 years ago an influx of "guest workers" from Galicia filled a labor shortage in the local ceramic industry. 

1 of 3

Select the service that is right for you!

COMPARE ALL SERVICES
Action Alerts PLUS
Try it NOW

Jim Cramer and Stephanie Link actively manage a real portfolio and reveal their money management tactics while giving advanced notice before every trade.

Product Features:
  • $2.5+ million portfolio
  • Large-cap and dividend focus
  • Intraday trade alerts from Cramer
  • Weekly roundups
TheStreet Quant Ratings
Try it NOW
Only $49.95/yr

Access the tool that DOMINATES the Russell 2000 and the S&P 500.

Product Features:
  • Buy, hold, or sell recommendations for over 4,300 stocks
  • Unlimited research reports on your favorite stocks
  • A custom stock screener
  • Upgrade/downgrade alerts
Stocks Under $10
Try it NOW

David Peltier, uncovers low dollar stocks with extraordinary upside potential that are flying under Wall Street's radar.

Product Features:
  • Model portfolio
  • Stocks trading below $10
  • Intraday trade alerts
  • Weekly roundups
Dividend Stock Advisor
Try it NOW

Jim Cramer's protege, David Peltier, identifies the best of breed dividend stocks that will pay a reliable AND significant income stream.

Product Features:
  • Diversified model portfolio of dividend stocks
  • Alerts when market news affect the portfolio
  • Bi-weekly updates with exact steps to take - BUY, HOLD, SELL
Real Money Pro
Try it NOW

All of Real Money, plus 15 more of Wall Street's sharpest minds delivering actionable trading ideas, a comprehensive look at the market, and fundamental and technical analysis.

Product Features:
  • Real Money + Doug Kass Plus 15 more Wall Street Pros
  • Intraday commentary & news
  • Ultra-actionable trading ideas
Options Profits
Try it NOW

Our options trading pros provide daily market commentary and over 100 monthly option trading ideas and strategies to help you become a well-seasoned trader.

Product Features:
  • 100+ monthly options trading ideas
  • Actionable options commentary & news
  • Real-time trading community
  • Options TV
To begin commenting right away, you can log in below using your Disqus, Facebook, Twitter, OpenID or Yahoo login credentials. Alternatively, you can post a comment as a "guest" just by entering an email address. Your use of the commenting tool is subject to multiple terms of service/use and privacy policies - see here for more details.
Submit an article to us!
DOW 16,563.30 -317.06 -1.88%
S&P 500 1,930.67 -39.40 -2.00%
NASDAQ 4,369.7730 -93.1290 -2.09%

Brokerage Partners

Rates from Bankrate.com

  • Mortgage
  • Credit Cards
  • Auto

Free Newsletters from TheStreet

My Subscriptions:

After the Bell

Before the Bell

Booyah! Newsletter

Midday Bell

TheStreet Top 10 Stories

Winners & Losers

Register for Newsletters
Top Rated Stocks Top Rated Funds Top Rated ETFs