Kallas presents coronavirus danger level traffic light system
Prime Minister Kaja Kallas (Reform) said on Thursday that a new white paper about living with the virus is essentially a social agreement about how people and organizations should act so that the level of danger does not increase.
Speaking on ETV's morning show "Terevisioon", she said: "We are all tired of the restrictions, including me, because society keeps being opened and then closed. The aim of the white paper is to reach a point where each individual and organization knows what is necessary in order for the danger level to not reach the next level. For example, catering facilities and shopping centers have gone through this process multiple times asking what can we do to decrease the danger of the virus. Shopping centers proposed monitoring mask-wearing on the door and switched off the internet."
She added the traffic light system shows the level of danger so that people will not have to have to check the infection rate themselves.
"The government with the scientific council follows the numbers and says that the danger level is yellow at the moment. And then every person can check what they can do so the level of danger does not increase to orange. We have to learn to live with the virus so that we do not have this constant stress inside. And so that everybody knows what has to be done."
At the same time, Kallas admitted the numbers on which the danger level are determined are also changing. She pointed out that when there were 16 infected people all over Estonia last spring, the then government decided that the level of danger was red. At present, the risk level for such a number of infections would be green.
"It is important for people and organizations to know that if the danger level is yellow, for example, the table gives them a clear indication that we will do one thing or another so that the virus level does not turn orange," she said.
She gave another example of organizations, more specifically catering facilities.
"A restaurant or other catering establishment does not want to be shut. But the virus is spreading and the government says the danger level is yellow. Then the catering facility knows what measures are needed to ensure that the level of danger is not exceeded and that restaurants will not be closed."
Kallas added the idea of the white paper is also to involve the whole society.
"It's like raising children. I can say that I'm your mother and that you have to do that, but the child throws himself on the floor and doesn't do it. But if you tell him you want to talk to him and he'll come. I want it to be the same with society. "
She said that the white paper contains not only short-term measures but also those which are planned for a longer period of time.
Tallinn City Council introduced a similar plan last autumn, according to which the structure of work changes depending on the infection rate. The council has been working on the "red scenario" since the end of February.
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Editor: Roberta Vaino