Germany mulls mandatory vaccination as pandemic hits hard

The conservative-led caretaker government in Berlin has so far strictly ruled out a vaccination mandate; there continue to be legal concerns that mandatory vaccinations could be in breach of the German constitution. [EPA-EFE / CONSTANTIN ZINN]

With the recent surge in COVID-19 cases and hospital beds being in increasingly short supply, multiple leading German politicians are speaking out in favour of making vaccines mandatory – something which was initially considered taboo.

“I believe that in the end, we will not get around a general vaccination obligation,” said Markus Söder, minister-president of Bavaria, on 19 November, who is generally regarded as a reliable weather-vane in German politics.

Should it be necessary to implement mandatory vaccinations, “then I am ready to take that step,” said Daniel Günther, minister-president of Schleswig-Holstein.

The conservative-led caretaker government in Berlin has so far strictly ruled out a vaccination mandate; there continue to be legal concerns that mandatory vaccinations could be in breach of the German constitution.

The aspiring “traffic light” government continues to be undecided. “There is no agreement on compulsory vaccination,” said Katrin Göring-Eckardt, parliamentary group leader of the Greens.

(Nikolaus J. Kurmayer  | EURACTIV.de)

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