In Germany's refugee centers, trash and waste are a big problem. Since large numbers of refugees live together in abandoned hotels or other similarly large apartment complexes, one can easily imagine the amount of trash that is being generated. But not only is it a lot - it's everywhere: piles of trash grow inside apartments and buildings and refugees are increasingly known for throwing garbage literally out of their windows onto the street.
Documented in many photos and videos by people all across Germany, streets, parking lots and entryways surrounding refugee buildings are often covered in trash that was thrown out of windows or from balconies. The perpetrators don't care about what will happen to it or really see it as a problem. Either they expect Germans and the government to clean it up for them or it just stays there. Due to the amount of trash and filth, even buildings that only formerly contained refugee inhabitants have become unusable due to the pollution and subsequent rat infestation.
Why do they throw their trash out of the window? Possibly that's simply what they're used to. Or maybe it's because the inside of the building is already filled to the brim with trash. Some explain the refugees' seemingly unwillingness to keep a certain amount of cleanliness by claiming they simply don't know how to. If the majority of the inhabitants are male, they see keeping their surroundings clean as a woman's job, so they don't know how to do it or even consider it as something they should do.
Many also expect Germans to clean up after them. Last month, a video of a refugee complaining about his trash cans being full became viral. In broken English and German, he complained that the janitors and social workers weren't cleaning up the trash inside his apartment properly. In response, German authorities were perplexed and confused – the cleaning and removal of trash inside the man's building were a responsibility of appointed refugees living there, since they received a small salary on top of their refugee benefits for doing that. But the Arabic-speaking refugee who was making those complaints didn't even consider that he was the one responsible for his own trash, which he had to put in a bin a few meters away from the building.
The hygiene problem in refugee centers has been ongoing for so long that volunteer associations have started to hold integrative courses for refugees on how to keep their homes clean and the topic of proper handling of trash has been included in German courses taken by refugees, with varying success.