BERLIN — Germany will stop sick pay for unvaccinated people who have to go into quarantine because of COVID-19.
Previously, Germans could claim for income lost due to having to go into quarantine after returning from abroad or coming into contact with a positive case.
Health Minister Jens Spahn says the move was a matter of "fairness," arguing that by the time the new rule comes into force on Nov. 1, everyone who wants a vaccine will have had an opportunity to get the shot.
"Those who protect themselves and others via a vaccination can rightly ask why we should have to pay somebody who ended up in quarantine after a holiday in a risk area," Spahn said, according to Reuters.
Spahn also said that choose not to get vaccinated "will need to bear responsibility for this then, including the financial costs," he said.
Germany has fully vaccinated 63.4% of its population. The government says it wants to achieve a vaccination rate of 75% to prevent a sharp rise in cases during the winter months.
The country in recent weeks has been taking steps to incentivize its citizens to get shots. According to Reuters, some German states have allowed restaurants or businesses to limit services to only vaccinated people instead of those who only show a negative test result.