France has approved a new law requiring people to have special coronavirus passes to go to restaurants, and other public venues.
After hours of debate, lawmakers voted to pass the bill by a large majority. The health passes will also be needed for domestic travel – and most controversially – vaccinations are now compulsory for all healthcare workers. Clashes broke out in Paris over the measures during the weekend. France has seen a recent spike in coronavirus cases and hospital admissions.
Germany is considering similar measures as infection rates are again on the rise. Experts and politicians hope to avoid another lockdown through mass vaccination. But should those who refuse to get inoculated face restrictions? Or would that essentially mean that vaccines become mandatory? The debate is intensifying, especially among those campaigning for Germany’s upcoming general elections.
After welcoming back tourists, Greece is now also battling a surge in new infections. Tourism is vital to the economy, and Greece faces the challenge of fighting the virus while luring tourists back to the beaches. After the worst year on record, the country can hardly afford to lose another summer. On the party island of Mykonos, authorities have imposed a curfew to try and contain the virus.
And a week after most lockdown restrictions were lifted across England, businesses are now facing a different roadblock.
As COVID-19 case numbers remain high, more and more people are being ‘pinged’ as close contacts by the national case-tracking app. It’s led to hundreds of thousands of employees being required to isolate for 10 days. Many businesses are facing staff shortages and closures as a result. It’s estimated what’s being called the ‘pingdemic’ will cost the UK economy billions.
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