Germany—hailed as one of the “success stories” in controlling coronavirus—was one of many European countries to ease its lockdown restrictions last week.
Yet just days after the first restrictions were removed, the rate of infection had begun to rise. And this is before the full effects of easing the lockdown will show up.
Right wing chancellor Angela Merkel had claimed the rate of infection had fallen and that “the very first phase of the pandemic is behind us”.
Yet Germany’s government‑owned disease research body, the Robert Koch Institute, still described the overall risk to the health of the population as high.
By Sunday, the rate of infection in had already begun to rise. Germany’s government—like every other—wants to force people back to work.
Most German states now have laws making it compulsory to wear face coverings, supposedly to make it safe to work.
But there are no laws forcing bosses to implement distancing measures. And it’s up to people to provide their own face coverings.
The rules on what these should be are very lax. A knitted at home covering, or even just a bit of cloth, are both apparently acceptable.
This is inadequate and even dangerous, as it risks simply carrying the virus around.