An initiative by scientists, activists and health workers declares the federal government’s previous Flatten-the-curve strategy to have failed. It calls for a radical change in strategy: a Europe-wide shutdown, also for the economy. “Shutdown means: We limit our direct contacts to a minimum – including at work,” says the call for the #ZeroCovid initiative. It started on Thursday – by Friday afternoon the initiative had collected more than 27,500 digital signatures.
“Like many other people, we no longer want to carry this eternal lockdown light or this constant back and forth between tightening and easing,” said spokesman Oliver Kube on Thursday of the news agency “dpa”. Therefore a solidarity “shutdown of all non-vital areas, especially the economy” is necessary.
It is particularly important to them that the weaker and weakest do not fall by the wayside, said Kube. To ensure this, the initiative calls for Europe-wide Covid solidarity levies on high assets or corporate profits. Any loss of wages is to be compensated by a broad social rescue package.
Prominent first signatories from the left spectrum
According to the initiative, the first signers include the climate activist Luisa Neubauer, the authors Margarete Stokowski and Teresa Bücker and the Sea-Watch activist Ruben Neugebauer. Many scientists and employees from the health sector have also signed it. Margarete Stokowski wrote on Instagram that she would like the appeal “to be implemented immediately”. Luisa Neubauer also called on Twitter to discuss things using the hashtag #ZeroCovid.
The spokesman considers the criticism that a comprehensive and solidarity-based shutdown is not possible in Germany to be unjustified. “If there are several other states that have already done this successfully, then that is not a question of feasibility in principle, but of power-political enforcement.”
dpa / chm