Local news translated – Friday, Nov. 19, 2021

Host Nation Update, Nov 19

Support from Baden-Württemberg – Bundesrat likely to approve infection law
Stuttgart/Berlin – In the Bundesrat, a majority of the states are emerging in favor of a new version of the Infection Protection Act.

The resolution passed by the Bundestag on Thursday stipulates that the “epidemic situation of national significance” will expire on November 25. However, at the same time, the legal basis for further requirements in the fight against the pandemic was established.  Access rules are to come only for vaccinated, recovered and tested (3G) at the workplace and in means of transport. The states will also be able to take further tough measures, such as restrictions and bans on events, in response to a resolution by the state parliaments. (Stuttgarter Nachrichten, Nov 19)

Kretschmann announces Corona rules in Baden Wuerttemberg
Stuttgart/Berlin – In a dramatic appeal, Baden-Württemberg’s Minister-President Winfried Kretschmann (Greens) addressed citizens after the Minister-Presidents’ Conference, urging them to vaccinate and get a booster shot.

“The situation is serious, more serious than ever before in the pandemic,” Kretschmann warned. “The fourth wave of corona is hitting us with brutal force”. In just a few weeks, intensive care units in the country could be “hopelessly overloaded,” he feared.  “We can still prevent a state of emergency in the clinics,” the head of government said in an online statement. “For that, it will take another great effort from all of us.” Vaccination rates remain too low, he said. “We are giving the virus too much leeway,” he criticized, warning, “No unvaccinated person can hide from this highly contagious virus. It will reach everyone.”

He called on physicians in private practice to offer an additional vaccination days, such as Saturday. “Then we’ll make a lot of progress.”  The 2-G rules, which have been in effect in the Southwest since Wednesday, are not recommendations, he said, and will be monitored. Violations could result in fines, Kretschmann reiterated. “In the near future” the measures would be tightened again. In bars, clubs and discotheques, vaccinated and recovered persons will then also have to show a rapid test. Attendance caps are planned for events, and in hotspot regions, unvaccinated people must expect curfews if the previous measures do not have sufficient effect.   

The new Infection Protection Act is to be passed this Friday. The states are calling on the federal government to introduce mandatory vaccination for employees in hospitals, nursing homes and facilities for the disabled. He said he personally advocated for this. “This is an important step. In this way, we can better protect the weakest in our society against the virus,” Kretschmann explained.  To close the vaccination gaps, the state government is now also taking a look at unvaccinated 12- to 17-year-olds. Since the summer, there has been both a vaccination offer and a vaccination recommendation from the Standing Commission on Vaccination for adolescents.

So far, exemptions from the 2-G rule and PCR requirement apply to unvaccinated students in all recreational settings. That’s likely to change next week in a new Corona ordinance. “There are talks to adjust the exemptions for 12- to 17-year-olds.” Bavaria already has a kind of recreational lockdown for unvaccinated teens. There, they are no longer allowed to go to the movies, the zoo, events, amusement parks or museums, or on cable cars for skiing. Exceptions to the 2-G rule apply to this age group until the end of the year in restaurants and cafés, and for the pursuit of sporting and musical hobbies. (Stuttgarter Nachrichten, Nov 19)

These rules apply to visiting the Christmas market
Stuttgart – Now it will be a race against time. On Wednesday, November 24, in the early evening, the Stuttgart Christmas market is to begin. Until then, the event company in.Stuttgart must work out a new plan. Because unlike planned, Karlsplatz, Marktplatz, Schillerplatz and parts of Königstraße will now be fenced off. And not only the status recovered or vaccinated is sufficient for the visitors, they have to show a daily updated quick test from a test station. In addition, masks are mandatory.

To make the market as safe as possible, the company exceeds the requirements of the country’s Corona Ordinance. “No other Christmas market in the country has such strict requirements,” Nopper said. Required is only 2 G, meaning vaccinated and recovered. The 2 G plus test now presents the event company in.Stuttgart with a “major challenge,” said managing director Andreas Kroll. There are to be at least three test stations around the Christmas market. With the test and the proof one gets a ribbon at one of nine booths or at the tourist information i-Punkt. With it one may enter the fenced off areas. That’s where the food stands are. Other stands are set up along the traffic routes.

To buy something there, you don’t need a pass.  As of now, 190 booths are being set up. Closing time will be 8 p.m. instead of 9 p.m. as in the past or 10 p.m. on weekends. There will be no ceremonial opening and no concerts in the Old Castle.  Even if the Christmas market now starts on November 24 – whether the booths will remain open until December 30 as planned is a question mark. Ehehalt announced that he would monitor the situation closely. The state government said it had the means to react accordingly: Public events could be canceled if the situation got completely out of hand, said government spokesman Arne Braun when asked. But for now, the Christmas market and the “Glanzlichter” on the Schlossplatz will open next Wednesday. (Stuttgarter Nachrichten, Nov 19)