Berlin (dpa) – Nighttime exit restrictions with a corona incidence above 100, but school closures only from an incidence of 200: The federal government has submitted a proposal for nationwide measures against the third corona wave.
The draft amendment to the Infection Protection Act must now be coordinated with the political groups in the Bundestag and with the states. According to information from the DPA, the Ministry of Health asked parliamentary groups for suggestions before noon on Sunday.
In the formulation help that was available to the German news agency and sent to parliamentary groups and states on Saturday, the federal government proposes several measures for districts where an incidence of 100 new infections per 100,000 inhabitants or more is recorded within a week. – that is currently more than half of all rural districts in Germany. For example, only private household gatherings with one other person and up to five people are allowed; Children do not count.
Exit restrictions are also suggested from 9pm to 5am. There should be only a few exceptions, such as for medical emergencies, going to work, or taking care of animals, but not just evening walks.
The federal government is proposing mandatory tests for school children: Everyone attending in-person classes must be tested twice a week. Schools are only allowed to close if the incidence is 200 or more on three consecutive days in a district. However, there is still room for emergency care in schools and day-care centers and the last classes can be exempted from closure.
Given the increasing number of new infections and increasing stress in intensive care units, the federal and state governments agreed on a new procedure. Instead of the usual conference between Chancellor Angela Merkel (CDU) and the Prime Minister, measures for regions with a lot of infections are laid down in law. Before the details were known, the initiative received broad approval. At the same time, it became clear that the individual measures would still struggle.
FDP leader Christian Lindner was critical of the federal draft: “The planned sharp curfew is ultimately disproportionate. For example, the evening walk of a vaccinated couple does not pose any risk of infection, ”he emphasized. “This provision is constitutionally very fragile.” The only orientation on the incidence of 100 infections per 100,000 inhabitants within a week is also incorrect. This does not adequately reflect the local pandemic.
According to the proposals of the federal government, opening shops should be banned again if the limit values are exceeded – with the exception of supermarkets, liquor stores, drugstores, pharmacies, but also bookstores, flower shops and garden centers. Leisure facilities, theaters, cinemas, museums and zoos were also closed. Group sports would also be banned – with the exception of professional and competitive sports. Gastronomy and tourism remained closed.
The federal government aims to pass the law through the Bundestag and Bundesrat as soon as possible, once the measures have been agreed with the states and parliamentary groups. The reigning Mayor of Berlin, Michael Müller (SPD), expects the trial to take up to two weeks. “I already assume that within the next 10 or 14 days we will work this out together – the Bundestag and Bundesrat – and that we will then have a framework that will allow us all to work well together,” said the President of the Prime Minister. . Conference on ZDF “Today Journal”. Bundestag President Wolfgang Schäuble (CDU) had previously expressed confidence that the changes could be implemented within a week.
In early March, federal and state governments had already agreed upon rules in case the seven-day incidence in a region exceeds 100. All easing measures taken up to that point should be completely reversed. Later, however, it turned out in many cases that the so-called emergency brake was not being used sufficiently – as Merkel, for example, had criticized.
The Prime Minister of Brandenburg, Dietmar Woidke (SPD), has now called for a speedy procedure. “Brandenburg has always campaigned for uniform national rules to contain the pandemic,” he told the German news agency in Potsdam. “If the amendment to the Federal Infection Protection Act contributes to this, that’s good. However, we cannot afford lengthy legislative amendment procedures; we need quick decisions. The third wave of the pandemic is not pausing. “
Most recently, health authorities reported 24,097 new corona infections to the RKI within one day. In addition, 246 new deaths were recorded within 24 hours. The RKI warned that the numbers could still be inaccurate because of the Easter and school holidays. The number of new infections reported within seven days per 100,000 inhabitants was 120.6 nationwide on Saturday morning. Doctors in intensive care units complain that the limit will be reached soon.
Union leader Ralph Brinkhaus called on federal and state governments to join forces in the face of the dire situation. Ultimately, countries have often exercised their leeway inconsistently, he criticized. A joint approach is now important: “There should be no front between the federal government and the states. We depend on fighting this pandemic together, ”he told Funke media group newspapers. Because the implementation of the measures is the responsibility of the federal states.
SPD group chairman Rolf Mützenich emphasized that it is not about a shift of powers from the states to the federal government, but about transparency and accountability. “Changes to the Infection Protection Act could provide clarity and counteract the impression of a patchwork quilt,” he told the editorial in Germany. The SPD group will scrutinize the federal government’s draft. A fast but orderly procedure is assured.