BN: Switzerland votes in favour of stricter Covid rules

Swiss Covid measures

Voters have approved stricter Swiss Covid measures for the country with a clear margin, showing 62% voting in favour. The Covid passport is already in place and means that people who want to attend large gatherings will have to prove that they have either been vaccinated against Covid-19, have recently tested negative, or recovered from the virus.

The turnout for the referendum was 65.7% which is an unusually high number for a country that holds regular public votes and represents how strongly the public feelings over the issue are. Only two of the country’s 26 states, Schwyz and Appenzell Innerrhoden, voted against the legislation. Both are conservative rural regions in Eastern Switzerland. 

Josef Ender, a spokesman for one of the groups that opposed it, told SRF public radio “it was important that the Swiss population could form an opinion on the tightening of the Covid law.”

He maintained that the legislation violates parts of the country’s constitution. The voting in of the new measures unlocks billions of Swiss Francs in aid for workers and businesses hit by the pandemic, a clause critics say assisted in swinging the vote. Rejection of the legislation would have ended the use of Covid passports, as well as the additional funding. 

The soaring tensions around the stricter Swiss Covid measures vote shocked many.

Police have upped security around several politicians who have faced a flood of insults and even death threats.

They also fenced off the seat of government and parliament in Bern, in anticipation of protests at the results.

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Written by

Claire Gordon