Aid for the homeless outraged: Spahn defends himself and the mask plan

Aid for the homeless outraged
Spahn defends himself and mask plan

In the affair surrounding the alleged plan to distribute inferior masks to vulnerable groups in society, more and more criticism of Federal Health Minister Spahn is hailing. He defends himself and now gets read the riot act by a representative of the homeless.

Federal Minister of Health Jens Spahn has rejected the accusation that he wanted to offer the homeless and Hartz IV recipients inferior corona protective masks, and at the same time criticized the SPD. “For us in the Federal Ministry of Health, the safety of protective masks had and has absolute priority,” said Spahn, according to a statement. Previously, the SPD co-chairman Norbert Walter-Borjan’s CDU boss Armin Laschet had indirectly asked in the “Bild” newspaper to release Spahn from his post because of the new allegations.

The background to this is a recently published “Spiegel” report, according to which the Ministry of Health bought inferior masks in the spring of 2020 for an estimated one billion euros. These were not freely marketable – even according to the special rules applicable at the time – and therefore had to be checked in the laboratory before they were used. The ministry has meanwhile planned to distribute such masks to the homeless, the disabled or Hartz IV recipients.

Representatives of the homeless have now reacted to the media report with indignation and incomprehension. “Homeless people are and were particularly at risk in the pandemic,” said the managing director of the Federal Association for Homeless Aid (BAGW), Werena Rosenke, the newspapers of the Funke media group. They live in densely packed communal accommodation, life on the street makes you sick, and many suffer from multiple illnesses.

“These people should have been equipped with safe masks quickly,” said Rosenke. With the distribution of badly tested masks, the opposite would have happened: “You would have knowingly put homeless people and, with them, full-time and volunteer workers at additional risk. Because with these defective masks they would have been led to believe that they had a false sense of security. That is reprehensible. “

Spahn outraged by the SPD

In his most recent statement, however, Spahn affirmed that the protective masks that are currently at issue had been “intensively tested” together with TÜV Nord and Dekra. Even without an EU certificate, it has been proven that they have all the properties that are necessary for infection protection.

He also criticized the SPD for unsettling a vulnerable group. “The fact that some now consciously unsettle the homeless and people with disabilities in order to create a good mood says more about the state of the SPD than about the quality of the masks,” said Spahn. It is outrageous that “out of election tactics” the accusation is made that “the government is treating the vulnerable groups in our society in this way.”