Local news translated – March 16, 2023

Graphic by U.S. Army Garrison Stuttgart Public Affairs Office

Host Nation Update, March 16, 2023


Verdi intensifies wage disputes – Strike at Stuttgart Airport on Friday

Four weeks after the latest strike at Stuttgart Airport, the trade union Verdi wants to paralyze the airport again this Friday – as well as Karlsruhe/Baden-Baden Airport.

Employees in the aviation security area and ground handling services, as well as a smaller number of public service employees, are called to the all-day warning strike. The strike is to begin in the early hours of Friday morning and end in the late hours of the night. Longer wait times and even flight cancellations or cancellations are to be expected, the union said.  In addition, employees of ground handling services – i.e. loading and unloading of aircraft, refueling, de-icing or bus transport – as well as the airport operating company FSG are called out. In Karlsruhe Baden-Baden, there will be a strike at the company ESA, which is responsible for passenger screening.

On the same day, the state district conference of Verdi Baden-Württemberg will take place in the Filderhalle Leinfelden. The head of the union, Frank Werneke, has announced his attendance. It is possible that he will also appear before the strikers.

Already last Monday, Verdi paralyzed several airports in northern Germany: the capital’s airport BER as well as the airports of Hamburg, Hanover and Bremen. Hundreds of flights had to be canceled – tens of thousands of passengers were affected. Now it’s the south’s turn. According to our newspaper, Verdi is also planning a major strike day for March 27 across the entire nationwide transport sector, including Deutsche Bahn and other rail companies.  this was at the beginning of 2019 – they were started in January and continued in February 2020. It wasn’t until a new agreement was reached after the pandemic in the 2022 pay round that the BDLS was willing to talk, he said. “The other six rounds of negotiations in 2022 were disappointing,” Verdi said. “Employers have yet to present an offer – they keep putting the issue on the back burner.”


Events in Herrenberg Literature, culture and shopping on March 17.

For the first time, libraries in Baden-Württemberg invite visitors to the Night of the Libraries. Herrenberg City Library will also open its doors on Friday evening, March 17. At the same time, a long shopping night will take place in the city center and there will be a diverse range of artists in several stores. The Office for Economic Development and Culture, the Working Group for Culture as well as the Herrenberg City Marketing Association and the Herrenberg Trade Association are participating.

For young and old guests, the Theater aus dem Köfferchen will play a bedtime story at 6:30 p.m. in the library. From 8 p.m. there will be live music with Herrenberg musician Kiara Huber. A library tour “for night owls” takes you from the basement to the roof. Fun and games will be provided by the “Library of Things”. Lending is possible until 10 p.m.

Shopping and experiencing culture in the city center

Herrenberg’s city center also comes alive in the evening hours of March 17. During a long shopping night, stores will be open until 10 pm. At several locations, there will be performances of the first-ever Kulturpraline format. The participating artists have something in their repertoire that can be shown and without much effort. At the Kulturpraline they give such a sample to the best. (BB.heute.de, Mar 15)


Stuttgart threatens rail chaos – Winfried Kretschmann disgruntled over rail closures

The state government has expressed contrition over Deutsche Bahn’s announcement of the route closures and its communication. “The communication policy on this example has a lot of room for improvement,” said Minister President Winfried Kretschmann on Tuesday in Stuttgart. Transport Minister Winfried Hermann also said the government had been informed at very short notice, “we were very shocked and also a bit surprised that something like this could happen.” After all, he said, people had been talking about the conversion to a digital rail hub for several years. Those responsible at Deutsche Bahn had already signaled very clearly that they were embarrassed by the course of events.  Hermann: “These closures are massive interventions in the system”.

Last Friday, Deutsche Bahn announced that important rail lines around Stuttgart would be partially or completely closed for weeks due to cable construction work for the new European Train Control System (ETCS). From the end of April, the first step will affect lines to Ulm, Tübingen, Aalen and Schwäbisch Hall.  “These closures are massive interventions in the system,” Hermann criticized. He said there are so many passengers on the routes that they can’t all simply travel on replacement buses. “We could have stopped this as a state,” the transport minister said. But he said he wanted to prevent the startup from having to be delayed by a year. “That’s why we said we accept the evil. But the responsibility clearly lies with the railroad.” He said it would have to pay for it and also make compensation to customers. “But we as a country will do everything we can to be helpful to make it work.” (Stuttgarter Nachrichten, Mar 15)


Climate activists “Last generation” – Majority in favor of tougher action against them

Around two-thirds of people in Baden-Württemberg are in favor of tougher action against climate activists from the Last Generation group, according to a new poll. According to the poll, 68 percent of respondents demand that protest actions be punished more severely.  Only a minority of respondents – six percent – in the representative survey reportedly support climate activists. Another 20 percent are against tougher action, as they believe laws and penalties are sufficient. Another six percent of participants were undecided.  Only recently, the Heilbronn District Court sentenced two activists from the Last Generation group to several months in prison without probation for blocking a road. They were accused of coercion. According to a spokeswoman of the group, it was the first prison sentence without probation to which activists of the group were sentenced. On February 6, the men had taped themselves on a street.  The current edition of “Baden-Württemberg Report” also found that nearly two-thirds of respondents (65 percent) see industry as the biggest driver of climate change. This is followed by the mentions of “fossil fuels” with 42 percent, “air travel” with 41 percent and “food from overseas” (35 percent). Car traffic only ranks fifth with 32 percent. (Stuttgarter Nachrichten, Mar 16)