The week before last, the Chamber of Deputies discussed a mandatory vaccination in Luxembourg and the Parliament called on the government to prepare a draft law within the next 3 months, and which foresees a mandatory vaccination for all citizens over 50 years of age and for all employees from the health and care sector and for the emergency services. This mandatory vaccination would initially be valid for two years. If a new, even more dangerous variant of the covid virus emerges for the younger age group, then this age limit could potentially be lowered as well.
The main objectives are clear:
- Guarantee medical care in the country – especially from hospitals;
- Protect especially the groups at risk, the people over 50 years of age;
- To exclude severe cases after an infection with the virus as much as possible.
The Democratic Party based its decision on the report of the group of experts – that is, on scientific evidence, on the experience of those people who deal with the virus on the ground every day.
The government should also do a study on the impact on hospitals, of people under 50, who are positive.
The Parliament also requested to receive reliable figures on vaccination rates among the targeted age and occupational groups.
The requested legislative project must now make its way through the regular process.
Measures such as a mandatory vaccination do not come easily to a liberal party: I can assure you that we do not like to go down the path of a mandatory vaccination (even if it limited in terms of target groups). However, we no longer see any other way to avoid the seriously ill and the many deaths which we aim to avoid to the largest extent possible.
However, for this purpose, we continue to rely on the voluntary vaccinations. This applies especially to the age group between 20 and 29 years, where the vaccination rate is the lowest.
We had hoped that the calls for solidarity would be sufficient to get the virus under control. However, this has not been the case. That is why we have now come to the point where there is now way around a sectoral and age-specific mandatory vaccination. Especially out of solidarity to the people at risk, and out of solidarity with the staff from the health and care sector.
Also, out of respect for the vast majority of citizens who have complied with all measures and restrictions from the beginning. In no case should they feel that their efforts were in vain. They are the fundament on our way back to normality.
All I can say is ‘Thank you’.