A majority of 78 percent of people in Germany see a deterioration in social interaction over the past three years. This emerges from a current Forsa survey commissioned by the health insurance company DAK-Gesundheit.

More and more people are experiencing insults and disrespect. At the same time, the vast majority are convinced that better social cohesion can have positive effects on health, as the DAK announced.

The vast majority of respondents reported experiencing negative changes in online social networks. The increase compared to the previous year is seven points to 82 percent. When shopping or in traffic, 81 percent observed a deterioration, 41 percent at school, university or at work.

Respondents: Increase in insults

According to their own statements, 85 percent of those surveyed experienced an increase in insults and disrespect – after 76 percent in the previous year. People also experience more aggression (79 percent), selfishness (74 percent), intolerance and exclusion (71 percent) and indifference (76 percent). More than half of those surveyed believe that children and young people are particularly affected by this.

Against the background of these figures, the DAK and Federal Family Minister Lisa Paus (Greens) are launching this year’s “Faces for a Healthy Togetherness” competition. Paus is the patron of the competition, with which the health insurance company is looking for exemplary projects in the areas of health, prevention and care for the fourth time. The competition is intended to set an example for respect, tolerance and community spirit.

The Forsa survey also showed that a large majority of respondents are convinced that better social cohesion can have positive effects on health. The DAK competition runs in all 16 federal states and is supported by numerous prime ministers.

Live healthily together

Paus emphasized that being healthy means more than not being sick. “Healthy means physical, mental and social well-being. It means prevention, care, provision, being able to participate and much more.” Living healthily together means supporting each other and preventing poverty from depriving people of the opportunity for education, participation and health.

DAK CEO Andreas Storm sees a need for action in the results of the survey. “It is alarming when the vast majority think that coexistence in Germany has become worse,” said Storm. “We as a society have to take active countermeasures here. We need people who are actively committed to healthy coexistence. We want to promote and honor this commitment to respectful interaction and living community with our competition.” Participation is possible until September 15th.