With the establishment of the Belzec killing center in March 1942, the Germans began the organized mass murder of the Jewish population of Lvov. They carried out a massive deportation in March 1942. German police officials and their auxiliaries sent those Jews capable of work to the Janowska labor camp in Lvov. By the end of March, some 15,000 persons had been deported by train to the Belzec killing center where they were murdered.
Work offered the best opportunity for survival. The Germans issued to skilled workers, in late March, work papers and armbands bearing a red “A” for Ausweis, meaning “work permit,” and a work registration number. Many Jews went to the Jewish Council offices seeking a life-preserving Ausweis, yet having a trade did not guarantee receipt of a document.