Corona pandemic: traffic light parties for the end of the emergency

Corona pandemic: traffic light parties for the end of the emergency
Corona pandemic: traffic light parties for the end of the emergency

Status: October 27, 2021 4:00 p.m.

The SPD, Greens and FDP agree that the epidemic emergency should end in November. However, this does not mean the end of all protective measures. Transitional regulations should create the legal framework for this.

The possible government partners SPD, Greens and FDP have agreed that the “epidemic emergency of particular importance” in the fight against the corona pandemic should end in less than a month.

If the plans of the Ampel partners are implemented, the deadline for the end of the emergency would be November 25th. According to this, transitional regulations should enable nationwide uniform measures to apply so that there is no patchwork of different corona requirements between the individual federal states.

No “Freedom Day”

SPD parliamentary group vice-president Dirk Wiese once again highlighted the major challenges posed by the pandemic, especially for Germany’s health system. That is why the epidemic emergency was sustained for over 18 months. It was last extended again in August.

But the situation is now different than in August, emphasized Wiese – especially with a view to the growing number of fully vaccinated people nationwide. That is why it is right to get out of the emergency. School closings or lockdowns would now be disproportionate, stressed the SPD politician.

Nevertheless, November 25th will not be “Freedom Day”, warned Wiese. There is still a relevant infection process in some federal states, so measures against the spread of the coronavirus are still necessary, said the parliamentary group vice-president and stated the goal of “having Covid-19 behind us in spring”.

Andrea Römmele, political scientist, on the corona measures after the end of the emergency

tagesschau24 4:00 p.m., October 27, 2021

“The situation remains problematic”

Green party leader Katrin Göring-Eckardt also emphasized: “The situation is still problematic.” In view of the currently increasing number of new infections, citizens will also need protection in the future. Here Göring-Eckardt put children and people who could not be vaccinated against Covid-19 in the foreground. In addition, the health system must continue to be prevented from being overloaded by the pandemic. In future, the federal states will receive a toolbox to enable them to react to the respective regional situation.

With the transitional regulations, federal states are to be given the right to order or maintain “less invasive” corona measures, such as wearing a protective mask or the 3G regulation, even after the end of the emergency. These transitional regulations, which the traffic light parties have in mind, should initially apply until March 20, said the parliamentary manager of the FDP, Marco Buschmann. For this purpose, paragraph 28a of the Infection Protection Act should be changed.

“Dominance of the executive branch ended”

With the epidemic emergency of national scope “serious burdens and heavy burdens for the rule of law were connected,” said Buschmann. He cited the curfews during the lockdowns, which the FDP had criticized as unconstitutional.

Now the Bundestag has to discuss the end of the emergency. According to Göring-Eckardt, these consultations could take place in mid-November. Buschmann announced that the other groups would be approached. A bill is now being drawn up. One will also delete the possibility that after the end of the pandemic emergency, the countries could intervene in fundamental rights. The “dominance of the executive” will be ended, stressed Buschmann.

Spahn promises support

The “epidemic situation” was first established by the Bundestag in March 2020 and has been repeatedly extended by Parliament since then. The determination of the emergency enables the federal government and the state governments to order central corona measures in a simplified way without the consent of parliaments.

Health Minister Spahn assured the SPD, Greens and FDP, however, that his ministry would support the drafting of a draft law: “Parliamentary responsibility for the pandemic policy is now being transferred to the new, emerging traffic light coalition,” said Spahn.

Criticism from Bavaria

Bavaria’s Minister of Health Klaus Holetschek, however, criticized the plans of the SPD, Greens and FDP. There is still an “emergency of international concern,” said the CSU politician, who is also chairman of the conference of health ministers. “That is why the countries need the greatest possible flexibility in order to be able to react to increasing numbers of infections.” It does not make sense that the state parliaments should in future be curtailed in their right to decide for themselves on an epidemic situation in their country.

The mentioned date for the end of the corona situation must also be doubted, said Holetschek. “Winter is coming. The number of infections is rising. The pandemic remains unpredictable. Nobody knows today whether it will be over on March 20, 2022.” In order to be prepared for the coming months, the federal and state governments urgently need to readjust “where there is a fire or can burn quickly,” emphasized Holetschek. Compensation payments are needed for those clinics that have had to record significant decreases in occupancy and thus revenue due to the care of Covid 19 patients, as well as more support for the nursing staff.

What does the end of the pandemic situation mean?

Vera Wolfskämpf, ARD Berlin, 27.10.2021 · 11:14

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