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Hygiene concept 2021

The climate crisis is permanently destroying the global basis of life. The next decade will determine whether the worst consequences can still be averted. Millions of people in the global South are already suffering the consequences, and Europe is also affected by droughts in summer as well as heavy rainfall that cause flood disasters. Time is running out for the changes that urgently need to occur. Our protest to stop fossil fuels cannot wait, because while all these extreme weather events are steadily increasing, natural gas continues to fuel the fire of the climate crisis.

At the same time, the Covid19 pandemic is killing people worldwide and exacerbating existing injustices. We recognize that we will therefore have to organise our protest in a responsible manner. We will minimise the risk of Covid spreading during our protest, even if that means limiting or adjusting our gatherings and protest. We are acting responsibly in the context of the present pandemic. However, we are at the same time acting responsibly in the context of the climate crisis.

Please read this handout carefully and discuss the following questions in your affinity groups:

  • How can we help minimise the risk of Covid infections?
  • How can we protect ourselves and vulnerable people around us from infections?

The Ende Gelände action consensus 2021 includes adhering to this hygiene concept. We cordially invite all people who are willing to adhere to the action consensus to participate in the action. Complying with this hygiene concept is also a prerequisite for the approval of assemblies. We therefore want to be clear on the fact that people who fail to comply with this hygiene concept may be asked to leave the action.

1. Basis

Different from last year, various Covid tests are now available in sufficient quantity. We want to use this opportunity to prevent infections during our action days from the beginning. This may be quite tough for those tested positively, but we hope for your solidarity with each other.

The core of this hygiene concept is being careful about our interaction with each other, keeping our distance from each other, wearing masks where distance is not possible (e.g. in confined spaces) as well as testing.

As a first step, we urge you to get tested before you travel to the action and to only come if you are tested negatively. In a second step, we ask all participants to test themselves or be tested again after 48 hours. The tests will be available, for example, at the info points and be properly stored there. Moreover, the testing options available to the public in Hamburg can be used. We hope that this approach will avoid infections to a large extent – and thus avoid putting others at risk.

2. Who cannot participate this time unfortunately? And whom do we recommend not to participate?

Symptoms or exposure to Covid risks before the action : We urge all persons who feel ill not to arrive and not to participate in order to minimize the risk of infection for everyone! The same applies to people who were in contact with people infected 14 days prior to the action or are from “high incidence areas” as identified by the German government (see https://www.rki.de/DE/Content/InfAZ/N/Neuartiges_Coronavirus/Transport/Archiv_Risikogebiete/Risikogebiete_aktuell_en.pdf?__blob=publicationFile ) .

People with existing health conditions or particular vulnerable or from “basic risk areas” : We recommend people with pre-existing health conditions (e.g., respiratory, cardiovascular diseases, or cancer) or who for other reasons are at a risk of contracting a severe form of Covid19 to not participate in our 2021 summer action. This also applies to people from “basic risk areas” identified by the German government. However, whoever decides to participate nonetheless is welcome to do so. If you come from a “basic risk area” as designated by the German government, we ask you to follow official procedures, as described here ( https://www.bundesgesundheitsministerium.de/en/coronavirus/current-information-for-travellers.html ).

3. Stable, regional affinity groups are very beneficial!

Stable affinity groups : Form affinity groups with a maximum of 15 people already during the remaining time until the action. The groups should remain stable from the journey to the camp/action and until and including the trip back home. They should not be changed or switched!

Regional affinity groups : Importantly, the affinity groups should ideally be regional. Only this makes it possible for entire affinity groups to travel back home by car or similar, if there is a risk of a Corona infection (see below).

4. Distance, masks, hand washing and desinfection

Distance : Within your affinity group is the only place where you need to keep no minimum distance. Everywhere else, the minimum distance of 1.5 meters applies. Whenever this distance cannot be kept, we will wear a mask.

Masks: Ende Gelände calls on all activists to bring enough medical or FFP2 masks for the action (important: without exhalation valve, otherwise other people won’t be protected!). For all people who cannot do so for financial reasons, for all particularly people that are particularly exposed to or vulnerable to Covid infections, Ende Gelände will provide FFP2 masks. In addition, please bring your normal, everyday masks (about one per day).

Enclosed spaces, plenary meetings : As soon as we are in enclosed spaces (including tents) with several affinity groups, we will take care to keep the minimum distance of 1.5 meters, to additionally wear masks and to make sure there is very good ventilation. Our important meetings (plenaries) will be held exclusively with delegates from the affinity groups.

Dynamic situations : In the action or during demonstrations, the minimum distance cannot always be kept, also as a result of what external actors might do. We will try to avoid such situations or keep them as short as possible.

Hand cleaning and disinfection: We will wash and/or disinfect our hands regularly, following the guidance. Please bring disinfectant for your own use!

5. In Hamburg

Information : In places where there are many people (info point, assemblies) we will follow the rules that will be published locally.

Hand signals and awareness: In assemblies, we will quickly make each other aware of the need to be (more) mindful of infection prevention by using a set hand signal that everyone close by will also use. There will be persons responsible for Corona safety on the ground that participants can approach if they identify a situation that could involve an infection risk.

Kitchen : We adhere to the hygiene concept of the kitchen.

Concluding the action : Returning from the action is for many activists a time where they like to be very close to each other, physically and emotionally. This year we again have to manage something difficult: to conclude our days of action together in a good way while at the same time being mindful of the need to protect ourselves and each other from Covid. Please stick to the plans, which we will announce, depending on the respective situation.

6. Self-isolation of the entire affinity group in case of corona suspicion!

What to do in case of symptoms? If a person develops symptoms that might indicate a Covid infection, this person and their affinity group must immediately keep their distance from all other people and get a PCR test. Further steps will be discussed once the test results are available.

Common symptoms of Covid-19 are (according to the Robert Koch Institute, the German government agency and research institute responsible for disease control and prevention): cough, fever, runny nose, loss of smell and/or taste, pneumonia. Other symptoms are: sore throat, shortness of breath, headache, aching limbs, loss of appetite, weight loss, nausea, abdominal pain, vomiting, diarrhea, inflammation around the eyes, skin rash, swelling of the lymph nodes, apathy/severe fatigue.

Self-isolation where? Participants staying in private quarters will isolate themselves there. The subsequent steps and measures will be discussed with the competent health authority.

How does a safe return trip work ? Affinity groups that may have Covid will return home in an individual car or similar if possible. This does not apply if a negative test result has been obtained prior to the return trip.

7. Being careful after returning from the action

Two weeks : Even if we are very careful, infections may occur. Therefore, we strongly recommend all participants to reduce their social contacts in the two weeks following the action, especially with people at risk. We recommend to self-isolate as far as possible and do a Covid test in consultation with your doctor and/or health authority.

Contact tracing : Be sure to sign up (with an anonymous email) for the email list through which Ende Gelände will send information about what cases of infection and/or follow Ende Gelände on our social media channels, and use your Corona ID (see below, section 8) to regularly check if you may have had contact with infected people.

8. Anonymous contact tracing concept, health authorities

Participation and data protection : An indispensable part of our hygiene concept is traceability. It is part of the action consensus that all activists participate in the contact tracing system. Activists who fall ill must immediately report this internally so that their contacts can be informed. This is the only way to stop an infection from spreading and to prevent other people from being infected without it being noticed.

We aim for an easy-to-use, largely anonymous tracing system with a very high level of data protection. Since the conditions imposed by authorities in charge of public health and assemblies are still being clarified, the details of the tracing system will be summarised on a separate page. Please inform yourself here: EG Corona tracing concept

When are local health authorities responsible and what does that mean ? We all want to avoid infections by strictly adhering to this hygiene concept. If there are nonetheless many suspected Covid cases during the actions days, the action will have to be cancelled unfortunately. In such a case the local health department is responsible for isolation, testing and decisions on when people can return back home. In this case, we cannot guarantee that activists will be able to remain anonymous.

The hygiene working group wishes you a good time. Take good care of yourselves and others!