Santos-born Marcia Elizabeth Litt Temel is a retired lawyer in the state of São Paulo and has lived in Vienna for more than three years. She is married to an Austrian and says residents are not surprised by the new measure, as the government has been announcing the possibility of a new lockdown, due to low vaccination rates and an increase in cases.
The confinement of the unvaccinated was announced this Sunday (14) by Chancellor Alexander Schallenberg, who considered the indicator “shamefully low”. Nearly 65% of the population received two doses of the vaccine in Austria, which is lower than the European average (67%) and far from countries such as Spain (79%) and France (75%).
“There are a lot of people who are against the vaccine, and they think it is nonsense, that the Corona virus does not exist. There are also deniers here. I take a crash course in German every day and spend six hours in school, then in my class of 12 mines, six People who were not vaccinated. One of them during the course had coronavirus and had to be removed.”
She says that when they began rolling out vaccine doses in the country, a rule called 3Gs was put in place, which allows entry to institutions only for those who have been vaccinated, who have had a negative PCR test, or who have previously been infected. With the number of people infected with the virus increasing, the Austrian government has decided to release entry only to those who have been vaccinated and tested negative.
Marcia and Matthias Temmel live in Vienna, Austria – Photo: Personal Archive / Marcia Temmel
With the new procedure, two friends who were foreigners to take a course with, decided to get vaccinated. This is because, in order to be able to attend the closed environments, they will need to send in PCR tests, collected within 48 hours. Within a week, they will need to do at least three tests.
“A Venezuelan and a Serbian will get vaccinated because it is impossible to go to any institution without vaccination. The other day, I went with a Venezuelan and she did not have the vaccination card and she did not have a PCR update. We stayed outside, the security guard came and said that if she is not vaccinated, she should leave, Because the outside area belongs to the restaurant, and if the police go there, they’ll shut down the establishment. “The inspection is really effective,” Marcia says.
Despite the new measure, according to the Brazilian, there was no major demonstration against this decision. He concludes, “I don’t see social chaos. There are some demonstrations taking place there in the first district and that’s it.”
People affected by this measure will not be able to leave their homes, except to shop, engage in physical activities, or receive medical care. The confinement will apply to all residents over 12 years of age who have not been vaccinated (or who have recently been infected).
From left: Austrian Interior Minister Karl Nahammer. Chancellor Alexander Schallenberg. And the country’s Health Minister Wolfgang Mikstein during an announcement on November 14, 2021 that people who have not been vaccinated against Covid will be placed in confinement from November 15, 2021 – Photo: Georges Hochmut / APA / AFP
Health Minister Wolfgang Mokstein said the government would assess the results of the restrictions within ten days, and urged those hesitant to accept the vaccine as soon as possible. Also on Friday, he announced that he would introduce mandatory vaccinations for health professionals.
For the procedure to be applied across the country, the standard must be approved by Parliament and regional government authorities. The states of Upper Austria and Salzburg, which have the worst number of infections, began implementing confinement restrictions on Monday last week.
This Saturday (13), Austria recorded more than 13,000 new cases of Covid-19, the highest number since the beginning of the epidemic in the country, which has a population of just over 9.8 million.
Chancellor Alexander Schallenberg announced on Sunday that people who have not been vaccinated or who have recently recovered from Covid-19 in Austria will have to comply with confinement from Monday (15) to contain the spread of the coronavirus.
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