Status: 12/28/2021 2:54 a.m.
The German Association of Towns and Municipalities demands consequences for anti-vaccination campaigners who violate laws at demonstrations. DRK President Hasselfeldt advocates a general compulsory vaccination. All developments in the live blog.
- USA cut quarantine time in half for symptom-free infections
- Federal data protection officer considers vaccination register possible
- Teachers’ Association calls for preparation for possible school closings
Community federation for “clear edge” in anti-vaccination protests
The German Association of Towns and Municipalities has called on the police and the judiciary to take systematic action against anti-vaccination campaigners who violate laws at demonstrations. “The state must show a clear edge in the anti-vaccination demonstrations,” said chief executive Gerd Landsberg of the “Rheinische Post”. Violations such as participating in unannounced demonstrations or participating in violence against police officers should, according to Landsberg, be punished with large fines up to imprisonment.
Most of the people who oppose the vaccination have not been noticed before, Landsberg said. “Perhaps some can still be put off when they realize that even taking part in unannounced demos, but especially taking part in violent clashes with police officers, can lead to drastic penalties.”
DRK President for general compulsory vaccination
The President of the German Red Cross (DRK), Gerda Hasselfeldt, has spoken out in favor of a general compulsory vaccination. “We are all constantly learning new things in this pandemic – and now I am positive about the general vaccination requirement,” said Hasselfeldt of the “Rheinische Post”. However, no one is released from the obligation to “restrict contacts, keep your distance, observe hygiene rules and keep testing”.
With a view to the compulsory vaccination for nursing staff decided by the Bundestag, Hasselfeldt does not expect a large wave of layoffs. “It cannot be ruled out in individual cases, so this risk should be taken seriously,” said the DRK President. In view of the previous experience in France, however, she does not expect high numbers of layoffs. In the DRK facilities, “the vast majority of the nursing staff and all other employees have already been vaccinated,” said Hasselfeldt.
GdP boss: Police work suffers from the expense of corona demos
The high effort for the police in the many demonstrations against the Corona policy affects the rest of the police work. The high level of effort due to numerous demonstrations and so-called walks may require “other police tasks to be neglected, for example traffic monitoring,” said the chairman of the police union (GdP), Oliver Malchow, to the newspapers of the Funke media group.
“You can do that. The question is, how long will the citizens accept it if some get away with certain offenses because the police can no longer pursue them.” He feared that this would lead to a loss of confidence in the police. On Monday, thousands of people again took to the streets against Corona restrictions in numerous cities.
Teachers’ Association calls for preparation for possible school closings
In view of an increase in severe corona diseases among children in the USA, the German Teachers Association is calling for preparations for possible school closings. “As soon as the fifth wave reaches Germany, we have to be able to react quickly,” said association president Heinz-Peter Meidinger to the “Tagesspiegel”.
If distance and switching lessons as well as emergency care are necessary in January, the plans for this would have to be set in motion now. One could not wait until the next Prime Minister’s Conference on January 7th. The primary goal must be to ensure as much regular teaching as possible until the end of the school year. Therefore, “a short, hard school lockdown is better than that we have to close individual schools over and over again in the coming months”.
Federal data protection officer considers vaccination register possible
The Federal Data Protection Officer Ulrich Kelber believes that the establishment of a central vaccination register is fundamentally possible. In order to decide from the point of view of data protection, politicians should first name the goals of such a register, Kelber told the newspapers of the Funke media group. Then it can be assessed whether a central vaccination register is “necessary or other measures are sufficient or even more suitable”. “A national vaccination register is not impossible under data protection law,” said Kelber.
The establishment of a central vaccination register is being discussed in connection with a possible corona vaccination obligation. The Bundestag will presumably discuss these at the beginning of next year on the basis of cross-party group motions.
Statutory health insurance chief continues against general compulsory vaccination
The head of the National Association of Statutory Health Insurance Physicians (KBV), Andreas Gassen, continues to reject a general compulsory vaccination against the corona virus. “Better than turning a big, uncontrollable wheel on the subject of mandatory vaccinations and vaccination registers, would be to direct all efforts on vaccinations and boosters,” said Gassen of the “Neue Osnabrücker Zeitung”. “If not significantly more people are vaccinated at the end of the day, the compulsory vaccination will not do much apart from massive anger, aggressive demonstrations and a flood of lawsuits.”
Holetschek: Compulsory vaccination without sanctions is “toothless tiger”
Bavaria’s Health Minister Klaus Holetschek (CSU) is sticking to his initiative to allow unvaccinated people with higher health insurance contributions to pay for a Covid-19 treatment. “Solidarity is not a one-way street,” said Holetschek on “Bild Live” with a view to the costs of the statutory health insurance companies that arise from the treatment of unvaccinated Covid-19 patients. It is also a matter of examining how the compulsory vaccination and with what sanctions it can be implemented. “Compulsory vaccination without sanctions is a toothless tiger.”
USA cut quarantine time in half for symptom-free infections
In view of the rapidly spreading omicron variant of the coronavirus with numerous new infections, the USA is halving the quarantine time for symptom-free infected people. Those who test positive for the virus but are symptom-free will only have to be in quarantine for five days instead of the previous ten, as the CDC said. The decision is a reaction to the Omikron variant, the spread of which threatens to affect “all parts of our society”, said CDC boss Rochelle Walensky. The shortened quarantine period will ensure “that people can safely continue their everyday lives”.
The CDC recommendations are non-binding, but are commonly followed by US business and politics. In its new guidelines, the agency also proposes that the five-day quarantine should be followed by a five-day safety phase in which those affected wear a protective mask in the presence of others. According to the CDC, contact persons of infected people who have not yet been vaccinated or boosted against the corona virus should also be quarantined for five days and then wear a mask for five days. Contact persons who have already been vaccinated three times do not have to be quarantined, but should wear a mask for ten days after contact.