Government announces hard lockdown and hopes for “solidarity”

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The corona situation in Austria, which has recently become increasingly acute, has left the federal government no other choice. In order to be able to contain the infection again, the state leadership around Chancellor Sebastian Kurz (ÖVP) announced today the renewed total lockdow. In broad outlines it is already known what will expect us: A school lockdown despite dissenting voices of health experts, an even stricter curfew and bans on visiting hospitals.

Federal Chancellor Sebastian Kurz explained that “sharpening up” is necessary because the numbers have increased exponentially in some cases despite the comparatively gentle lockdown so far. The 7-day incidence is currently around 550, the target value would be 50, meaning that the infection rate per 100,000 inhabitants is ten times higher than the target value. “If we do not react massively, there is a risk that the numbers will continue to rise”. This would lead to an overload of the health system.

Contents of the second lockdown which will be implemented from next Tuesday, November 17 to Sunday, December 6

  1. the trade will be closed. Goods of daily use are excluded. – Supermarkets, drugstores, pharmacies, banks and post offices.
  2. body related services will be closed. – such as hairdressers, masseurs, manicurists, etc…
  3. compulsory schools are switching to distance learning. In kindergartens and schools there is the possibility of childcare if necessary.
  4. home office is to be realized wherever possible.
  5. exit restrictions apply as in the first lockdown The following exceptions: Professional purposes, supply of goods, helping others, physical activity (“stretching legs”).

Kurz announced that it will continue to expand short-time work. Companies would only receive assistance if employees are not laid off. After the lockdown, compulsory schools and the retail sector will be the first to reopen, Kurz said the plan for the time after the lockdown. “Nobody wants the schools and retailers to be closed and the catering industry to stand still, but we must take this step together,” Kurz appealed to the population.

“We must and we will master this threatening situation, we will defeat the virus”, Anschober is optimistic. This lockdown is the last chance to avoid a collapse of the health system, the Minister of Health raises the alarm.

Kogler: “This is about the health of all of us

Life will be drastically restricted for the next two and a half weeks. Every Austrian could save lives with his behavior now, “perhaps even his own, even if many do not want to believe it,” said Kogler. “It is really dangerous and really serious, there is nothing to shake and interpret,” said Kogler. Now it needs consequence and patience, so Kogler’s appeal. “Please stay at home”, the Vice Chancellor addresses his wish to the population. Only in the permitted exceptional cases should people leave their own four walls.

With regard to kindergartens and schools, Kogler says that there is local care and learning support. Many will have to make use of this, Kogler is sure. He is thinking of all those who work in the grocery trade, for example, but also of all those who have urgent things to do in the home office.

For the economy, the recent lockdown is “bad news”, the Vice Chancellor knows. But they will “help quickly and unbureaucratically”, promises Kogler and also calls it a sales substitute for this industry. He would be in contact with Finance Minister Gernot Blümel in this regard and would support him to the best of his ability.

As Minister of Sport, Kogler advises people to practice sports outdoors. However: Alone or only with people from the common household. One should not arrange to meet with others to do sports together. Outdoor exercise is important for body and soul, said Kogler.

Anschober: “This wave is more dynamic and more dangerous
Every day, hundreds of thousands of new infections occur worldwide, says Health Minister Rudolf Anschober, describing the seriousness of the situation. The current wave ei more dynamic than the first. This can be seen not only in Austria, but also in our neighbors. Austria must now “pull the emergency brake” to push the numbers down, Anschober said. The situation in Austria is dramatic. Especially since 23 October, Anschober said. “We are nowhere near where we need to be”, Anschober called the Greens for the necessity of the new lockdown.

One knew why the numbers had increased. In the early years, the movements had been reduced by over 50 percent. This time, at the lockdown light, “by far not succeeded”. The experts’ forecast predicts that around 7,000 new infections per day are to be expected in the coming week. At present, 584 persons would need intensive medical care, and here too, rates of increase are expected in the coming days until the lockdown takes effect. Anschober is convinced that the turnaround will be achieved together.

Nehammer: “What is needed is a joint effort
There are professional groups that have been in action for months and are doing great work. The executive had already checked the quarantine regulations more than 190,000 times and there had been 6.8 million border controls in the past eight months.

  • Hector Pascua, Source: orf.at and news agencies. Picture: screenshot: kurier.at
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