Due to the rapid spread of the corona virus, the following guidelines for restricting social contacts have been in effect in Germany since March 22, 2020 – initially for two weeks.
1. Reduce contacts: Citizens are encouraged to reduce contact with other people outside of their own household to an absolutely necessary minimum.
2. Keep the minimum distance: In public, wherever possible, there is a minimum distance of at least at least one other than those mentioned under 1. 1.5 m to adhere to.
3. Maximum 2 people: Spending time in public space is only permitted on your own, with another person who does not live in the household or with members of your own household.
4. Outdoor exercise: The way to work, emergency care, shopping, visits to the doctor, participation in meetings, necessary appointments and exams, help for other or individual sports and exercise in the fresh air, as well as other necessary activities, of course, remain possible.
5. No parties: Groups of people celebrating in public places, in apartments and private facilities are unacceptable given the serious situation in our country. Violations of the contact restrictions should be monitored by the regulatory authorities and the police and sanctioned in the event of violations.
6. Restaurants are closed: Restaurants are closed. This does not apply to the delivery and collection of take-away meals for consumption at home.
7. Service provider closed: Service companies in the field of personal care such as hairdressers, cosmetic studios, massage practices, tattoo studios and similar companies are closed because physical proximity is essential in this area. Medically necessary treatments remain possible.
8. Comply with hygiene regulations: In all companies and especially those with public traffic, it is important to comply with the hygiene regulations and to implement effective protective measures for employees and visitors.
Violations of the contact restrictions should be monitored by the regulatory authorities and the police and sanctioned in the event of violations.
What can I do now?
- Sport and exercise in the fresh air are allowed. However, only accompanied by a maximum of one other person or with the family from your own household. The minimum distance of 1.5 meters must be observed.
- The way to work or to the child's emergency care is also allowed. This also applies to routes to necessary dates and tests.
- Purchases, visits to the doctor and help for others are also permitted.
- Medically necessary treatments – such as medical foot care – are still possible.
What are the penalties for violations?
In North Rhine-Westphalia and Rhineland-Palatinate, fines of up to 25,000 euros are possible, reports "tagesschau.de". There are no nationwide requirements. Chancellor Angela Merkel emphasized at the announcement of the rules on March 22 that "penalty levels or administrative fines were not mentioned". However, the contact restrictions are not recommendations, but rules. "These are rules that must be observed in all of our interests. The law enforcement officers will check this, and where they find violations, there will be consequences and penalties."
The Chancellor made an urgent appeal:
Please bring everyone along. Do what is right for our country now. Show reason and heart. Countless fellow citizens work in the health system or maintain our daily care. We should always thank them for that. Above all, we owe them that we give the virus as little opportunity to spread as we can.
Individual regulations in the federal states
Further regulations based on regional peculiarities or epidemiological situations in the countries or counties remain possible. Current information on which rules apply in your federal state can be found on the federal states' websites.
The state of Bavaria, for example, already imposed an exit restriction on Friday, March 20, 2020, and continues to adhere to these individual regulations. An exit restriction also applies in Saxony, according to which it is forbidden to leave the apartment or house without good reason. It is valid until midnight on April 5, 2020.
The federal government always provides information on current regulations for all of Germany at bundesregierung.de.
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Sources used: bundesregierung.de, tagesschau.de, spiegel.de