The night curfew and the other new rules in the fight against the corona virus that have been in force since Monday raise many questions. We have gathered some answers.
Update: Late on Monday evening, the state government of North Rhine-Westphalia also set a restriction on freedom of movement for the Oberbergischer Kreis.
What applies to the restriction of freedom of movement, the 15-kilometer rule?
The final ordinance states that residents from the aforementioned districts are only allowed to leave this area “as long as a radius of 15 kilometers as the crow flies from the border of their own home town (political municipality) is not exceeded.” if you don’t live more than 15 kilometers away. The measure applies from Tuesday, January 12th to January 31st, 2021.
The points of the regulation in detail:
- Anyone living in one of the above-mentioned districts may only leave this area if they do not exceed a distance of kilometers as the crow flies from the border of their own home town.
- If you want to visit residents in the hotspot, you may only do so if you do not exceed a radius of 15 kilometers from your home town.
Possible reasons for an exception to freedom of movement:
- Anyone who has to run errands for work, business, voluntary work or similar
- Who goes to a school, child day care or emergency care outside the radius
- Who visits facilities for people with disabilities
- Anyone who has to visit close family members, partners and similarly related persons
- Anyone who takes on nursing, supporting, caring activities for other people
- Anyone who uses medical, nursing or similar services.
In the regional ordinance, the NRW Ministry of Health expressly points out that an exception to the 15-kilometer rule is only possible if a criterion is met and it is done in accordance with other applicable rules.
What exactly does the curfew mean?
For the time being, up to and including January 25th, staying outside of an apartment is prohibited in the entire Oberbergisches Kreis between 10 p.m. and 5 a.m. This applies to both Oberbergers and people from abroad – regardless of whether they are on foot, by bike or by car. Strictly speaking, drivers shouldn’t even cross the district during this period.
What are the exceptions to the curfew?
Anyone who has to go to a doctor or hospital because of an emergency or treatment that cannot be postponed is allowed to leave the house. An acute illness of the pet also counts. Anyone who has to pursue their job, their training or who performs a service is also allowed on the doorstep. This includes volunteer firefighters: if they have to be deployed, the control center will inform the police. Another exception is the accompaniment of the dying. It is also allowed to take care of animals, such as going for a walk. All exceptions would have to be made credible, for example by submitting a “suitable certificate”.
Can you drive to your partner or back home during the suspension?
There are no exceptions for a partner, says the district administration. Partners must organize their visits so that they are no longer outside between 10 p.m. and 5 a.m.
What if the bus or train does not arrive in Oberberg until after 10 p.m.?
The circle does not accept that as an excuse either. If none of the exceptions described in the ruling exist, a trip must be organized so that you are back in your own four walls between 10 p.m. and 5 a.m.
What applies when crossing the district area?
In principle, the rules also apply to travelers passing through, for example on the A 4. But: If external drivers are checked, their violation should be punished with restraint if there is a credible reason (reason for the transit), according to the district.
How do the police intend to monitor compliance?
Police spokeswoman Monika Treutler says that the district and municipal authorities are primarily responsible for monitoring compliance with the rules. The most important task of the police, on the other hand, is to ensure security: such operations always have priority. However, the police will also check in the context of administrative assistance. For example, patrol car crews could stop and check motorists, cyclists and pedestrians.
How do the municipalities react?
The mayors are satisfied that the district had already issued the stricter regulations on Sunday – even if the infection rate in the municipalities is different, says Mayor’s spokesman Dr. Gero Karthaus (Engelskirchen). As one reason for the differences, Karthaus names religious communities that meet privately in prayer groups or house groups after the churches have closed. The multipliers in these communities should now be addressed and binding and verifiable regulations should be made: “The time of asking and begging is over.” some think that it is none of their business ”. In his community, Karthaus wants to call on gas stations and snack bars to also close when the curfew begins.
What do the two big churches say about the ban on worship?
District dean Christoph Bersch was annoyed on Monday that he had to find out about the extension of the ban on worship through the press. He could generally understand the decision, but it would have made sense if the Oberbergische Kreis had brought the churches on board as ambassadors and bridges. “We’re not just anyone. Together with Superintendent Michael Braun we stand for the two big churches. We haven’t been celebrating church services with presence for weeks, ”says Bersch, recalling the protection and hygiene concepts that have been working for weeks.
The Evangelical Superintendent Michael Braun added in a joint statement by the Catholic and Evangelical Churches: “We absolutely understand all measures that protect people in order to prevent the further spread of the corona pandemic.” But there is no reason to believe that The church district and the Catholic parishes were irresponsible drivers of infection.
How do the free churches react to the fact that they are seen as hotspots of the pandemic?
Johannes Dück, office manager of the “Church for Oberberg” and also hygiene officer, emphasizes that he cannot speak for all free churches. For KfO, however, he assures that the applicable rules and regulations of the corona pandemic will be adhered to. “We restrict everything so that we don’t become a hotspot,” says Dück. “On the one hand, we cannot claim that we love people and then say that we don’t care about Corona.” However, the office manager admits that KfO cannot control everything in private either.
What are the rules for hospital visits?
Patients still have the right to visit hospitals and rehabilitation facilities, but the times are limited: In the Oberberg Clinic between 3 p.m. and 6 p.m. up to a maximum of one hour and one visitor per patient room. Visits to infected areas (suspected wards, isolation wards, intensive care units) are generally not possible.
Are several craftsmen still allowed into the house?
Many bosses of companies have been concerned with this question, who turned to the district trade not only yesterday, but also last week. Her concern was that only one person could go into a household. Spokeswoman Katrin Rehse was able to reassure her that the protection ordinance for Oberberg provides for exceptions for professional activities: “If the job of the craftsman requires it, he can bring colleagues into a private house.” .
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