Mask requirement in downtown Frankfurt: “There are infections everywhere”

Mask requirement in downtown Frankfurt: “There are infections everywhere”
Mask requirement in downtown Frankfurt: “There are infections everywhere”
  • fromClaus-Jürgen Göpfert

    shut down

In order to prevent a new lockdown, the city of Frankfurt is tightening the corona regulations again. According to health officer Stefan Majer, it is “one minute to twelve”.

With a delay, with very serious faces and with palpable tension, Mayor Peter Feldmann (SPD) and health department Stefan Majer (Greens) appear before the journalists. The mayor gives the number of the day: In Frankfurt, 70.9 people per 100,000 inhabitants were newly infected with Covid-19 within seven days. Antoni Walczok, the deputy head of the health department, sums up the dramatic situation with the sentence: “There are infections everywhere.”

Measures from October 19th 2020

From October 19, new regulations to combat the corona pandemic will come into force in Frankfurt am Main. They are initially valid until October 31.

1. Mouth and nose covering must be worn throughout the city center within the system ring and on the southern bank of the Main.

2. During the curfew from 11 pm to 6 am there is a general ban on selling alcohol.

3. Professional sporting events take place without spectators.

4. A contact limit of ten people will be introduced in public spaces.

5. Private celebrations may only have a maximum of ten participants, whereby the participants may come from a maximum of two households.

6. A maximum of 100 participants applies to public events. Exceptions are possible with a health concept that has to be approved by the health department.

7. In secondary schools, a mask is required in class if the minimum distance of 1.50 meters cannot be maintained. Further restrictions are being examined for school sports. If possible, physical education should only be contactless and outdoors.

8. A mask is required for all religious celebrations if the minimum distance of 1.50 meters cannot be kept.

9. Educators are required to wear a mouth and nose covering when in contact with one another and with other adults. This only applies to contact with children if it is pedagogically justifiable. jg

And Majer adds: “It is a minute to twelve!” The city must now succeed in stopping the spread of the virus. The sharp increase in the number of cases causes him “massive concern”. The infection process has become “diffuse”. However, the mayor assures that schools, daycare centers, cinemas, theaters and cafés could stay open: “We are fighting an invisible enemy, but we are not heading for a lockdown.”

At the same time, the head of the health department promises: “We will not make Frankfurt a police state!” Frankfurt will remain “a city of responsible citizens”. And further: “We are doing everything to ensure that there is no lockdown.” In order to control the new Corona regulations, the city has requested “personnel reinforcement for the regulatory office”. The city council cannot answer the question of the FR about the fine that mask refusers face: “They catch me on the wrong foot.”

In its emergency, the health department has requested help from Bundeswehr soldiers, and the first will arrive at the town hall during the press conference. They now have to be “incorporated and trained”, according to Walczok, and are intended to help doctors follow the routes of infection even further despite the rapidly increasing numbers. Over half of the newly infected people come from the age group between 20 and 40, “they have great social contacts and like to party”.

The doctor describes the biggest problem with which the medical professionals are struggling: “The pandemic is eating away at patience.” Again and again, the city meets people who have “no insight” and who appear with “a certain degree of aggression”. The hospitals in the city “still have capacities”, they are “not yet overloaded”.

The head of the health department counteracts the strong criticism of the hotel and restaurant association at the curfew between 11 p.m. and 6 a.m. These allegations came “from another time,” says Majer. The situation changes every hour and the city has to react. “There is no longer any discussion about the curfew,” the Green said emphatically. The mayor points out that all complaints from restaurateurs and clubs have been “dismissed” by the courts.

Before the press conference, the head of the health department personally informed the major Frankfurt soccer clubs Eintracht and FSV that they would have to play without a spectator. “I’m damned sorry personally,” assures the city council and praises the hygiene concepts of the major football clubs. Unfortunately, the situation leaves him no other choice. Professional sport is now “facing huge problems”. How long the ban on spectators will apply, Majer cannot say: “Maybe there are better times.”

When asked by FR whether the planned opening of the Jewish Museum could take place on October 20 with 250 guests of honor and the “Frankfurt reads a book” reading festival with 80 events from October 24, Majer simply explains: “I cannot say that. “He adds:” We will approach the organizers and see whether concepts can be adjusted. “But it could be” that events are canceled “. The health department is facing “a lot of work” in the next few days.

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