Changed vaccination order Police criticise early vaccinations for teachers and kindergarten staff

Düsseldorf · Teachers and daycare staff in NRW are now to receive their Corona vaccination from the beginning of March. But other occupational groups such as the police must now wait even longer. Criticism also comes from NRW Interior Minister Herbert Reul.

 Symbol photo.

Symbol photo.

Foto: dpa/Sebastian Gollnow

In North Rhine-Westphalia, teachers and daycare personnel are to receive their Corona vaccinations in advance, starting in March. This was announced by NRW Health Minister Karl-Josef Laumann (CDU) on Tuesday morning on WDR. "I think we will start with this in the first half of March," Laumann said in the interview. At the same time, the minister acknowledged that this decision would delay vaccination for other professional groups.

The federal and state health ministers had agreed on Monday to upgrade teachers at elementary and special schools and daycare educators in the vaccination sequence from group three (increased priority) to group two (high priority). Group two also includes many chronically ill patients and people over 70.

With teachers and daycare staff, a "huge occupational group" moves into the higher priority group, but at the same time no other group has been taken out, and there are no extra supplies of the vaccine, Laumann said. That's why it's taking longer for everyone in Group 2, he said. "I can't vaccinate the police and vaccinate the teachers at the same time," Laumann said. The same is true for the chronically ill, he said.

„I am stunned"

The NRW state chairman of the police union (GdP), Michael Mertens, reacted with sharp criticism. "Now that the police officers are to slide to the back, I am stunned. I am totally annoyed about it," Mertens told the "Rheinische Post" (Wednesday).

The police had not closed a single police station, had not canceled any operation, although police officers were spat on and shouted at in the operation. One obviously wants to make it palatable for teachers to return to school, the GdP state chairman said. "This is the moment of truth: What is the policy on the police?" said Mertens.

There is also criticism from NRW Interior Minister Herbert Reul (CDU). Reul said Tuesday in response to a question, "The Standing Commission on Vaccination has worked out an order and the priority groups. This has been followed by the Federal Ministry of Health. We should maintain this order for the sake of credibility and not question it week after week." Reul emphasized, "There are currently only limited quantities of vaccine available. I think this race that is breaking out now is wrong. I will not participate in it."

The Verband Bildung und Erziehung NRW (VBE) welcomed the decision. "There is a yearning for schools to return to face-to-face teaching. But this should then also be linked to providing the best possible protection for teachers and learners," explained VBE state chairman Stefan Behlau. Therefore it is a good step to bring forward the vaccination offer for the personnel in the Kitas, the primary and special schools. "It would be more consistent to make the offer to all colleagues who work in face-to-face teaching - regardless of the type of school."

Original text: (dpa)

Translation: Mareike Graepel

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