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United States. Office of the US High Commissioner for Germany / A program to foster citizen participation in government and politics in Germany

3. The public employee, the citizen and the state,   pp. 11-13 PDF (2.1 MB)

Page 13

tive fields in the state and federal governments,
and with the principal members of the German
Personnel Society. Despite the slowness in secur-
ing the changes which we believe to be desirable,
the difficulties are in general no longer due to
differences regarding the objectives but rather to
inability of the Germans to visualize how these
objectives can be put into practice. The discussions
between the Germans and the visiting experts have
proved a most fruitful method of securing reforms.
Five French experts on administrative law will
visit Germany during the remainder of 1950 to
consult principally with the judges of the Laender
administrative courts.
(3) German Visits to the US and European
It is planned to invite six top German personnel
administrators to go to England and to France
during 1950 for one month in each country. As a
result of these trips it will be possible for the
German Personnel Society to publish a book on
civil service in European countries as a companion
volume to the one published this year on civil
service in the United States.
For 1951, eight senior German personnel admin-
istrators will go to the United States for three
months and ten junior professionals for six months.
It is proposed that the seniors observe personnel
systems in the US in operation. Many of the recent
techniques developed in the US are unknown in
Germany, and, so far as personnel administrators
are concerned, the great problem is to show them
that practices which will introduce democracy into
the German system are practicable and are con-
sistent with the basic philosophy of the German
The junior professionals will go through similar
training by observation, but, in addition, will have
special university courses in preliminary prep-
In the field of general training for the public
service, ten professionals in 1950 and eight pro-
fessionals in 1951 will go to the US for three
months each. They will be chosen from the gov-
ernment personnel departments, from the min-
istries or from the administrative schools. They
will have an initial series of seminars at an Ameri-
can university and will then observe American
administrative practices and the relation be-
tween American public servants and the public
with special reference to safeguards against the
violation of citizens' rights by official action and
expeditious methods of settling such violations if
any occur.
(4) Pamphlets
"The Public Service and the Citizen." A simple
interpretation of the relation between the state,
the public servant, and the citizen, explaining to
the public servant his role as one selected to serve
the citizen, and explaining to citizens the limita-
tions under which the public servant must per-
form his work, since he is bound by laws and reg-
(5) Land Offices
Interest in Civil Service at the Land level is
directed to proper legislation and to proper ad-
ministration of the personnel system.
As to legislation, the laws promulgated by the
Land governments in 1946 at the request of Mili-
tary Government are adequate to permit satis-
factory systems. The concern of the Land Offices
here is to advise against retrogressive changes in
the law and, if the Landtage propose to pass new
laws, to take such action as appropriate to ensure
that these laws are satisfactory.
In the field of personnel administration consider-
able progress has been made in the U.S. Zone
Laender over the past four years, but it is still
subject to the opposition of the conservatives and
to doubt among personnel administrators about
prospective federal legislation and its effect upon
them. Land personnel officials should be encour-
aged in the initiation of modern personnel practices
and practices which effectuate the objectives listed
above. It should be made clear to them that, al-
though Article 75 of the Basic Law permits the
Federation to issue general provisions concerning
the legal status of persons employed in the public
service of the Laender, this will not permit de-
tailed regulation by Federal law. Furthermore,
Article 33 of the Basic Law guarantees every
German equal access to public office in accord-
ance with his suitability, ability, and professional
The Land Offices should note whether the ad-
ministrative courts lack adequate jurisdiction to
deal with all complaints against improper officials'
action, and should encourage citizens who seek
more adequate support for these courts.
(6) Kreis Offices
The use of civil service issue as a subject in the
citizen participation campaign is discussed in Part
III, subd. 4. So far as local civil service is con-
cerned, the attention of the KRO's is directed to
comments under (5) immediately preceding.
(7) Newspapers and Radio
Material suitable for feature articles and radio
talks will be prepared by IPG and circulated
through ISD, with information copies to the Land
*and Resident Offices. Land Offices may take sim-
ilar action, and particularly should bring to the
attention of Land newspapers and radio any mate-
rial bearing upon significant civil service action
taken or proposed by the Landtag or the govern-
In the field of administrative courts considerable
emphasis ought to be placed upon newspaper and
radio publicity for administrative court decisions
which protect the citizen against official mistakes
or misconduct, and equally upon important deci-
sions which establish the rights of the state against
the citizens. It is evident that many Germans do
not fully appreciate the value of the administrative
court in protecting their legal rights, and many do
not know when decisions are rendered in a partic-
ular case which may affect them directly. Further-
more, it is important to the education of citizens
in public affairs that they should be informed of
the development of administrative law and its ef-
fect upon them.
(8) Films
A documentary film on the subject of civil serv-
ice is in preparation in cooperation with the Mo-
tion Picture Branch of the Office of Public Affairs.
This film will be directed to improvement of rela-
tions between the public servant and the citizen.
It will emphasize factors as courtesy and an at-
titude of helpfulness.
German news reels may cover significant activi-
ties of the German Personnel Society and its sub-
ordinate groups.

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