Berlin (dpa) – Given the decreased willingness to vaccinate and the approaching start of the school year, politicians and associations are massively promoting corona vaccinations.
SPD chancellor candidate Olaf Scholz called for a more aggressive attitude from the vaccinated: “We have to convince our friends that they will get vaccinated. This is something that concerns us all,” the federal finance minister told the Funke media group newspapers (Saturday). “At work or in the sports club we should all say: I was vaccinated, that was good.”
SPD leader Saskia Esken and the German Association of Cities spoke out in favor of vaccination campaigns in schools as the new school year begins. The summer holidays will end in the first federal states next week, while lessons will start again face-to-face in Mecklenburg-Vorpommern, Schleswig-Holstein and Hamburg. “I promote the sending of vaccination vehicles to schools to make – in consultation with the parents – vaccination for young people as easy as possible,” Esken told the editorial network in Germany (RND/Saturday).
Helmut Dedy, general manager of the city council, told the German news agency: “In order to guarantee classroom education, we are calling on the federal states to allow more vaccinations in schools.” This can help protect young people and reduce coronavirus infections in schools.
In the north, this is partly already planned. In Schleswig-Holstein, students from the age of twelve and all employees of mobile teams can be vaccinated in community schools and secondary schools. Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania wants to determine the need and then send mobile vaccination teams for 16- and 17-year-olds to schools in the second week. Hamburg is planning mobile offers for vocational school students.
Dedy said: “This can be done through mobile vaccination teams in schools, such as in Schleswig-Holstein. Or this can be done through more offers for young people, for example in football stadiums or shopping centers, where many of them meet,” said the local representative. “We have to go to the young people with the vaccinations and not wait for them to come to the vaccination center or the doctor’s office.” This requires parental permission first.
So far, more than 51 percent of the population has been fully vaccinated – in the opinion of experts, far too little to keep the coming fourth wave flat given the rampant, highly contagious strain of the Delta virus. And the vaccination rate is slowing: Currently, more than half a million vaccine doses are still administered on many days, in May/June in some cases it was around 1.5 million. Meanwhile, the number of infections is rising – still at a low level of just over 15 new infections per 100,000 inhabitants per week, but the number is steadily increasing.
The left-wing parliamentary group in the Bundestag calls for a wider awareness campaign. In a paper available to the RND, party leader Jan Korte calls on actors such as trade unions, sports associations, religious communities, but also clubs and cultural institutions to be involved. “We will not be able to convince fanatical opponents of vaccination. It should be about vaccinating people who don’t feel well informed and have fears that can be taken away from them.”
The Central Council of Muslims in Germany called on all Muslim believers to be vaccinated. “There are no religious reasons for Muslims to refuse vaccination against Corona. On the contrary: the protection of others against diseases and one’s own health are very important in Islam,” said Central Council President Aiman A. Mazyek, the RND.