In the corona pandemic, Berlin is not relying on the type of emergency brake that the federal and state governments had decided. Rather, the Senate is looking for its own path that also includes new guidelines for citizens and companies.
Despite rising corona numbers and the increasing spread of the more dangerous British virus variant, the Berlin Senate is not taking back the recent easing of the corona measures. But he wants to protect them by significantly expanding corona tests. The governing mayor Michael Müller (SPD) and his deputies Klaus Lederer (left) and Ramona Pop (green) announced this on Saturday after a Senate meeting.
From Wednesday, a negative corona test is required for every Berliner in order to be able to go shopping in stores. This also applies to visits to the hairdresser and museums, but not to so-called system-relevant trading structures such as supermarkets, pharmacies or drugstores, which were always open even during lockdown.
Berlin is thus deviating from the agreement between the federal and state governments in early March on a so-called emergency brake. After that, the easing of the past weeks would have to be reversed if the incidence is stable at over 100 new infections per 100,000 inhabitants within seven days. In Berlin, the value has been above this threshold for several days. According to the health administration’s report on Saturday, it was 138.6.
► 735 new corona cases in Berlin – 7-day incidence continues to rise to 138.6
► “Pull the Corona emergency brake from an incidence of 100” – Spahn counts Müller
The easing decisions that have been made in Berlin since the beginning of March include a slight easing of the contact restrictions, open flower shops or garden centers and expanded shopping opportunities in other shops as well. This also includes open beauty salons, museums or galleries, as well as expanded opportunities for outdoor sports.
No changes to contact restrictions
Nothing should change in the current contact restrictions. Meetings with five people from two households are also allowed over Easter, plus children under 14 years of age.
There are stricter rules for companies. According to Müller, you will be obliged to enable your employees to have a corona test twice a week in the future. There is no compulsory test for employees.
In addition, the Senate wants companies to work from home because the nationwide rules are not enough for them. Accordingly, companies should offer 50 percent of their office workplaces in the home office in the future. This is intended to significantly increase the proportion of employees who no longer have to commute to work, but work at home. This could reduce contacts and slow down the corona pandemic, it said.
Last Tuesday, the Senate had already decided to extend the lockdown to contain the pandemic until April 24th at the latest. The federal and state governments had agreed shortly beforehand on an extension, although the end date April 18 was in view.