Benefits affair scandal now in exhibition: ‘People are not numbers’

Benefits affair scandal now in Exhibition
Photo Credit: Studio040

The exhibition ‘Weggecijferd Teruggevochten’ (Those who were dismissed, they fought back) is on display at the Stationsplein in Eindhoven. It consists of eight photos of people duped by the benefits affair, taken by photographer Bert Teunissen.

Tens of thousands of people were unfairly viewed as fraudsters by the tax authorities, leaving many in dire financial condition. Social lawyer Eva González Pérez brought the abuses to light and assists people in their fight against the injustice done to them. “If you are asked as a citizen to provide documents for investigation, of course, you do it. These people just didn’t know they were being investigated for fraud.”

The tax department also assessed people on their ethnicity. A large proportion of the victims are from immigrant backgrounds. González Pérez found out in 2016 that the tax authorities kept a file of second nationalities.

The large panels show photos of people affected by the benefits affair. On the back is the file number they received from the tax department. The purpose is to portray that the tax department treated people as numbers without knowing their personal situation.

Source: Studio040

Translation: Chaitali Sengupta. She also gives online INBURGERING classes.


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