Local news translated – Friday, March 11

Host Nation Update, Mar 11, 2022

Editor’s Note: Off-Post COVID rules are regularly updated and consolidated on the Stuttgart Citizen’s Local Coronavirus Rules Explained page.

Federal Government criticized over plans to relax the COVID rules
The federal government has been criticized because of its plans to relax the COVID rules. The Greens, for example, warned of deaths caused by a denial of reality. At the center of the criticism is the planned nationwide basic protection, in which, among other things, mask obligations are to be dropped in many areas.

The growing Omicron wave is likely driven largely by variant BA.2, according to Lauterbach.  Green Party health politician Janosch Dahmen warned of deaths caused by an inadequate infection protection law. “Denial of reality puts lives at risk, and  stronger basic protections are needed.” Indoor masks, for example, should remain for now.  Justice Minister Marco Buschmann presented and defended the new plans.  The compromise would reconcile freedom and security, Buschmann said on Twitter. “In everyday life, there will be virtually no more restrictions.” At the same time, the federal states would get a toolbox to be able to act if necessary.  

Nationwide, according to the draft, after March 20, mask obligations only need to be continued at  nursing homes, clinics and public transportation, as well as long-distance trains and airplanes. Testing obligations would only need to be continued at nursing homes and schools. If COVID cases increase in any district, town or region, then in these “hotspots” some of the stricter requirements will be imposed again, such as Mask obligations, distance bans, hygiene concepts as well as proofs of vaccination, recovery or tests (3G/2G/2G plus) – but only if the respective state parliament has dealt with it beforehand.   Health departments reported 262,752 new Corona cases in 24 hours, according to RKI data as of Thursday morning. The seven-day incidence rose significantly to 1388.5 nationwide, up from 1174.1 a week ago. Within 24 hours, 259 deaths were recorded, according to the new data.  Vaccination progress continues to be slow. On Wednesday, about 95,000 vaccine doses were administered across Germany. (Stuttgarter Nachrichten, Mar 11)

Situation in Baden-Württemberg – Corona incidence continues to rise
The seven-day incidence in Baden-Württemberg continued to rise on Thursday. The number of reported new infections per 100,000 inhabitants within a week climbed from 1646.5 to 1700.7 within one day (as of 16:00). According to the state health office in Stuttgart, the value in the previous week was still at 1367.7. “The number of new infections transmitted remain at a very high level since the end of February. 

Compared with the previous day, the agency reported 37,976 new infections in the country – an increase to 2,399,978 registered cases since the pandemic began. Coronavirus or related deaths have now reached 14,584 in Baden-Württemberg. That is 22 more deaths than the previous day.  According to the report, 247 patients were in intensive care units in the state on Thursday – about the same number as in the previous week. 11.3 percent of ICU beds were occupied by COVID patients. The number of COVID 19 cases in normal wards increased by 113 from the previous day to 1731, compared with 1560 the previous week. (Stuttgarter Nachrichten, Mar 11)

NON-COVID related news: 

Demonstration at Filderstadt area- solidarity with Ukrainian people.
After a joint minute of silence, Filderstadt’s Lord Mayor Christoph Traub said he and his counterparts from Ostfildern and Leinfelden-Echterdingen have been in close contact with their partner cities since the beginning of the war. “To date, there have been no human casualties from Poltava and no significant structural destruction,” he reported Wednesday. The supply situation is good, he said. The town is located on an aid corridor and has a functioning train station and hospitals, he said. 

The support of Filderstadt’s citizens is enormous. “We have experienced a never-ending willingness to help since the first day of the war,” Traub said. The three “Filder” partner- cities are collecting donations through an account and working together in an inter-municipal working group. The mayors meet once a week. “We plan to send a relief transport in short term, with the support of the higher-level relief organizations,” announced Traub.  

The cultural committee of Vaihingen is organizing a rally with a concert on Saturday, March 12, from 2 p.m. on Schwabenplatz for donations for the people in Ukraine. “Already at the beginning of the conflict in Ukraine, numerous people have turned to us with offers of help,” reports district mayor Kai Jehle-Mungenast. “This was well-intentioned but unfortunately somewhat uncoordinated.” On the city’s website, he says, those helping were then offered the opportunity to collect their ideas in a forum. The response was overwhelming.  Thus, on Saturday, native Ukrainians Annemarie Härtner and Afina Albrecht (chairman of the Ukrainian Atelier for Culture and Sport) will give speeches. The association is setting up an information booth and is asking for donations. We want to show our support,” says the district mayor. That’s why the churches in Vaihingen have been organizing an ecumenical service every Friday from 6 p.m.  “At the beginning of the rally, all church bells in the district will ring for five minutes.” (Stuttgarter Nachrichten Mar 11) 

Attack on Ukraine – Boeblingen partner cities condemn the war
Böblingen and its partner cities have now set a sign against war and for peace in a joint declaration on the occasion of the attack on Ukraine. “Since the end of the Second World War, the city of Böblingen has always placed particular emphasis on city partnership – as a tool for international understanding and as a means of maintaining peace. Our joint step on this path was most recently the signing of the ‘Charter of Friendship’ in November 2018. We are once again taking up this idea of a joint, high-profile positioning,” writes Mayor Stefan Belz in a press release.

Six partner cities and the city of Böblingen have now signed a joint declaration for friendship and against war. “Such a joint, symbolic act is a strong sign of hope in these dark hours,” Belz writes further.  The declaration has been signed by all twin cities – except Bergama. From the Turkish partner city there has been no feedback so far, explained Stefan Belz. Co-signatories are thus Alba (Italy), Geleen (Netherlands), Glenrothes (Scotland), Krems (Austria), Pontoise (France) and Sömmerda (Germany). (BB.heute.de, Mar 11)

Böblingen – Further closure in the Schwabstraße probably until the beginning of May
New drinking water, gas and electricity lines are the reason for the closure. 

On March 14, a third construction phase will be set up in Böblingen’s Schwabstraße. The work will probably last until May.   

The closure is between Arnimstrasse and Kernerstrasse.  (BB.heute.de, Mar 11)

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