Pandemic: Palmer: Municipalities could quickly enforce compulsory vaccination

Palmer: Municipalities could quickly enforce compulsory vaccination

Boris Palmer (Bündnis 90/Die Grünen), the mayor of the university town of Tübingen. Photo: Bernd Weißbrod/dpa

© dpa-infocom GmbH

Is vaccination against Corona coming soon, or is it not coming? Opponents doubt that the municipalities can enforce such a measure. A well-known green OB considers that to be an advance.

Tübingen’s Lord Mayor Boris Palmer considers it easy to enforce general vaccination against the corona virus in the municipalities.

«There is no implementation problem. Every municipality in Germany is able to do this through its fine office and population register,” said the Green politician of the German Press Agency. That can be done within a few weeks – even without a vaccination register. If, for example, FDP politicians or other opponents of vaccination claimed that it was difficult to implement such an obligation, that was an excuse. “The circumstances are a mere pretext,” said Palmer, who advocates rapid vaccination. «If you don’t want something, you’re looking for problems. Anyone who wants something is looking for a solution.”

If the Bundestag decides on compulsory vaccinations and a fine of around 5,000 euros, the municipalities could create an excerpt from the electronically managed residents’ registration files and write to all citizens over the age of 18. He only arranged something similar in November, it took a week.

Tübingen as a possible “model municipality”

In the letter, citizens would be asked to submit at least one written proof of their initial vaccination within four weeks. If they do not comply, the fines office will send out a hearing form with the threat of a fine of up to 5000 euros. The additional procedures are also not a problem for the fine office.

The city council and the top data protection officer in Baden-Württemberg contradicted Palmer’s assessment. The municipal association considers a vaccination register necessary because of the sensitive health data. Setting up one takes time, said a spokeswoman for the dpa. The data protection officer, Stefan Brink, told the mayor of Tübingen that he was proposing “a full control of the population as part of fine proceedings”. Brink told the dpa: “It’s not as easy as Mr. Palmer imagines.”

Palmer offered to try it out in Tübingen. “We also do this as a model municipality.” But first, the general obligation to vaccinate must be decided in the Bundestag. All Prime Ministers and Chancellor Olaf Scholz have spoken out in favor of an introduction. The Bundestag is to vote on this delicate issue without the pressure of a parliamentary group. It is expected that parliamentarians across party lines will come together and submit corresponding so-called group motions, which will then be voted on.


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