Wearing a mask in Germany: Jena, a model city

Since Monday, April 27, wearing a mask is mandatory in Germany, in transport and almost everywhere in stores. Here in Bad Honnef, near Bonn. REUTERS / Wolfgang Rattay

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Since Monday, April 27, wearing a mask is compulsory in Germany in public transport and, in most regions, in shops. A German city had taken the lead before everyone else: Jena, in Thuringia, imposed the wearing of a mask on its 110,000 inhabitants as of April 6.


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With our correspondent in Berlin, Pascal Thibaut

Alexander Kekulé, one of the best known German virologists, works in Jena. This expert very early defended against the advice of certain colleagues the wearing of the mask in public space. It is therefore no coincidence that his city has taken a step ahead. Already upstream, Jena had taken very strict measures to quarantine people returning from risk areas. The increase in infections had skyrocketed. The advantage was that the coronavirus cases were well detected and isolated.

To go further, the city therefore decided from April 6 to impose the wearing of masks in public transport, shops and at work. Everyone pulled out their sewing machines. It's a very reasonable decision, approved Gerda, a resident. I was given two patterns for free. I also received two or three from a few friends. I feel like I'm part of the fight against infection.  "

Jena is also the only city requiring the wearing of masks for children at school. And anyone with a runny nose is not allowed to work. More than three weeks after the entry into force of this measure, the first assistant of Jena Christian Gerlitz draws a positive balance from the action carried out in his city. “  At first there were many protests. But ultimately, it was a great success. In Germany, this showed that reservations about wearing masks were not justified. In the past 18 days, we have had three new infections.  An assessment which makes Jena one of the cities least affected by the coronavirus in Germany.

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