Germany-wide restrictions for the unvaccinated

style="float: right; margin-bottom: 10px; font-weight: 600;"Thu 2nd Dec, 2021

The federal and state governments are planning a comprehensive package - based on the proposals of future Chancellor Olaf Scholz (SPD) - to break the fourth Corona wave. This is according to the updated template for the federal-state resolutions this Thursday, which is available to the Daily Mirror. The participants of the federal-state summit have been discussing this resolution since 11 am.

On most points, the agreement was already reached in advance between the SPD and the Union side. The goal is to send out a big signal of joint action, they said.

It will probably be the last round with the outgoing Chancellor Angela Merkel (CDU), on December 8, Scholz is to be elected as the new Chancellor and the new government sworn in, with excitement is also expected who will succeed Jens Spahn as Minister of Health, it is one of the most difficult tasks that currently has to offer German politics.

After the lurching course of the traffic light parties in recent weeks, Scholz now made it clear in "Die Zeit": "For my government, there are no longer any red lines in what needs to be done. There is nothing that we rule out."

Accordingly, this is firmly planned:

  • Nationwide, access to cinemas, theaters, and restaurants will still be possible "regardless of incidence, only for vaccinated and recovered persons." "Supplementary, an up-to-date test may be required (2GPlus).
  • The 2G rules will be extended to retail stores nationwide, regardless of incidence. "So only vaccinated and recovered people will have access. Stores for daily needs are exempt. Access must be controlled by stores."
  • "Strict contact restrictions for the unvaccinated will be instituted in all countries. Private gatherings in public or private spaces attended by unvaccinated and unrecovered persons are to be limited to one's own household and no more than two persons from another household," the bill says, which is also what Scholz had proposed to state government leaders on Tuesday.
  • Large events are to be significantly restricted: "For events in closed rooms, only a maximum of 30 percent of the capacity may be used up to a maximum total number of 5,000 spectators. Foroutdoor events, only a maximum of 30 percent of the capacity may be used up to a maximum total number of 15,000 spectators," reads the latest draft, dated 08:30.
  • Christmas markets are to be open nationwide only for the recovered and vaccinated; 2G-Plus Christmas markets are also optional. This is apparently also how the carnival season is to look, which is to be 2G-Plus only.
  • Many clubs and discotheques are to be closed nationwide. The limit for mandatory closures is 350 new infections per 100,000 inhabitants in seven days.
  • Schools nationwide are to be required to wear masks in all grades.
  • In addition, the legislature is asked to amend the Infection Protection Act in such a way that the instrument box, which is valid until the epidemic situation of national scope is lifted, remains available to the federal states in order to be able to impose regional lockdowns even beyond the current deadline of December 15. This would allow curfews to remain possible, for example. This is a concession by the traffic light parties SPD, Greens and FDP to Union-governed states such as Saxony and Bavaria, which had demanded more room for maneuver. Restaurant closures are also to be part of the state opening clause, but not linked to a specific incidence value nationwide - unlike clubs and discos.
  • The federal government will also launch a facility-based vaccination requirement for employees, such as those in elderly care facilities and hospitals, before the end of December.
  • The planned mandatory vaccination for all is scheduled for February 2022, the bill says: "The federal government and the states are asking the Ethics Council to draw up a recommendation on this by the end of the year.
  • Nationwide - under the control of the new crisis team leader General Carsten Breuer - up to 30 million first, second and booster vaccinations are to be given by Christmas. Physicians are to be able to delegate vaccinations to pharmacists and nursing staff, for example in old people's homes, but a legal amendment is also to be created so that pharmacists and dentists can also vaccinate on a permanent basis.

The aim of the federal-state round is to introduce uniform minimum standards throughout Germany, he said. "As a result, many states and regions with currently low incidences are also tightening their rules to mitigate the wave and provide proactive relief to their healthcare systems. The particularly affected states will continue to act beyond these minimum standards with state regulations," it is emphasized with regard to the expanded toolbox.

It is planned that the Bundestag will pass the amendments to the Infection Protection Act next week and the Bundesrat on December 10, so that the regulations could then take effect from December 13 or 14.

Until recently, it was disputed at which incidence level the stricter regulations for clubs and discotheques should take effect. Because of the inoculations, today incidence values of 400 new infections would correspond to approximately 200 before one year, starting from these values the health system comes to its load borders, it was said. Accordingly, the debate about a disco limit of 350 had also arisen.

Bavarian Prime Minister Markus Söder (CSU) also wants to talk about compulsory vaccination for children over the age of twelve at the meeting. "This has to be discussed," he told Bavarian Radio. "In general, of course, it would be good if compulsory vaccination were to take place, at least for those for whom the vaccine has already been tested - from the age of twelve." That would go quickly and make schools "absolutely safe." In addition, he said, his feeling about young people is that "they also want to be vaccinated because they say, 'Then I have freedom.'"

There was resentment in state circles at the move, saying that the existing proposals should now be put in place instead of coming up with more and more new ideas. There was a certain amount of time pressure due to the upcoming Great Convocation for Angela Merkel, who is leaving office after 16 years. The meeting was not expected to be too long.

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