Membership of AfD ‘incompatible’ with being member of police union

A German police union (GdP) has passed a resolution to make membership incompatible with being a member of the AfD. The union announced on Friday that anyone questioning or attacking coexistence in Germany was undesirable in the GdP.

The federal executive of the police union has therefore agreed that simultaneous memberships in the AfD and the GdP were not compatible with each other. “Members who profess to support the AfD with their party membership, support it or sympathize with it,” would therefore be asked to leave the GdP.

The Gewerkschaft der Polizei (GdP) is a trade union in Germany. It represents 181 000 police employees, and is one of eight industrial affiliations of the German Confederation of Trade Unions (DGB). The GdP is one of the three trade unions for police employees in Germany.

The positions and opinions of the AfD contradict the solidarity and public safety role of police employees, explained GdP Vice Dietmar Schilff. For example, high-ranking AfD politicians took part in lateral thinking demonstrations in the Coronacrisis and sought to join forces with right-wing extremists, anti-Semites, Reich citizens and conspiracy theorists. “As a GdP member with a long democratic tradition, we are resolutely opposed to the AfD’s request,” emphasized Schilff, who is himself a member of the SPD.

In support of its position, the union also adopted a multi-page position paper. In this it states, among other things, that the AfD is a “essentially racist, nationalist, inhuman, democracy- and union-hostile party”. AfD politicians are “partly responsible for hatred, agitation and violence”.

The AfD rejected the allegations and condemned the incompatibility decision. “If the GdP takes such a decision shortly before two important state elections, it obviously acts for everyone as an extended arm of the Greens and the SPD, two parties that regularly trample on the interests of police officers,” said the deputy domestic policy spokesman for the AfD’s Bundestag faction and former police chief commissioner Martin Hess. “In order to conduct party politics under the guise of political correctness, the GdP uses anti-democratic methods by trampling on pluralism of opinion.”

Time and again, unions, above all the German Trade Union Confederation, to which the GdP belongs, have positioned themselves against the AfD. For example, in 2019 the GdP criticized the candidacy of police officers for the AfD in the state elections in Thuringia.

The service union Verdi warned before the last European elections in 2019 against working with the AfD. In the previous year, the Verdi district association of Middle Franconia had already passed a resolution announcing the incompatibility with membership in the AfD. In the same year, the German Association of Journalists had also reached such an incompatibility decision.

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