The slow compensation of duped parents in the payment affair creates anger in the House of Representatives. The MPs fetch that this year, perhaps more people have been hired for the ‘recovery organisation’ than parents have received compensation.
Secretary of State Van Huffelen (Finance) thinks that at the end of this year only 300 to 600 parents have paid compensation. In doing so, compensating for the victims, for which the Cabinet allocated 500 million more than six months ago, goes a lot slower than promised. Parents receive compensation because they were wrongly labeled as a fraudster with the childcare allowance or had to repay huge sums for minor errors. Van Huffelen is setting up a special recovery organization.
“ 501 people have been hired for the recovery organisation this year and between 300 and 600 people will be helped”, says CDA member Omtzigt. “At this rate, it will take us 100 years. What happened here?”
It‘s a ‘gross scandal‘, breezes SP-MP Leijten. “A crude scandal that an implementation organisation has been built up, has half a billion euros at its disposal and does not go beyond compensating 300 people this year. We call it a recovery operation, but I’m going to turn it into frustration surgery. There‘s just too little happening. I don’t know where to start, I‘m just really angry.”
It hurts Omtzigt extra that 96 percent of parents who were accused of ‘gross intention/guilt ‘were wrongly given that stamp of fraudster. “Let it act on you. More than 20,000 parents have been identified as fraudsters, of which more than 19,000 are unjustified.”
“ That means that these people were abandoned as half criminals, which had a huge impact on human lives,” says Pvda MP Nijboer about that. He is worried about the slow course of recovery: “People are again completely stuck in procedures. It takes far too long, so people are not done justice while they have been wronged.”
With PVV MP Mulder the thoughts go back to Van Huffelen’s predecessor Snel, who died at the end of last year because of the affair that got out of hand. “The former Secretary of State was good at making excuses and getting better,” says Mulder. “Unfortunately, new Secretary of State is starting to look like him. It is more than sad what this Secretary of State shows.”
GL-MP Bromet hopes that Van Huffelen will start to compensate more generously, even if people get too much. “The key question today is whether perfection is not the enemy of good. Carefulness and fear go for satisfaction and I find that incomprehensible here.”
Van Huffelen recognizes in the Chamber that they are ‘no big numbers’ parents who are being helped this year. “But I‘m happy with every parent we’ve helped,” she adds. However, the Secretary of State cannot escape acknowledging that compensation has not gone well so far: ‘I find that incredibly annoying. ‘
According to Van Huffelen, there are two reasons why compensation takes so long. “Our organisation was not yet robust enough to get to work at the required speed,” she says. “And really helping parents in this situation takes time, longer than we thought at first.” According to her, a faster and more generous approach is not included: “It is not possible to do a one-size fits all-solution.”