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Putin extends paid holiday period in Russia until end of April as Covid-19 cases spike

Russia’s week-long paid leave will be extended until the end of the month, President Vladimir Putin has announced in a national address. The country is bracing for the possible rapid growth of Covid-19 cases.

The move comes a day after the President acknowledged that the situation with COVID-19 in Russia was becoming “complicated,” during a meeting with officials, conducted remotely. Deputy Prime Minister Tatyana Golikova used the opportunity to suggest extending the paid time off. 

Putin said the peak of the coronavirus epidemic is yet to come both globally and in Russia. Moscow, which is the hardest hit Russian city, announced almost 600 new confirmed cases on Thursday. 

“I’ve made a decision to extend the time off until the end of the month, that is, until April 30 inclusively, while maintaining wages for employees,” the President said.

According to Putin, the combination of isolation regimes and holidays will allow Russia “to buy time for proactive measures.” However, he conceded its too early to talk about turning the tide of infections. 

The President added that before the end of this week he wants local governors to determine the level of danger in their regions and introduce appropriate preventative measures based on the “epidemiological situation” that pertains. 

On Wednesday of last week, Putin surprised Russians when he declared the period from March 28 to April 5 a paid holiday. However, the rules don’t apply to essential workers and those who can carry out their tasks from home. Following Putin’s announcement, most Russian regions introduced partial lockdowns and self-isolation regimes.

Moscow business daily RBK reported that 64% of Russians worked this week regardless, citing data from research firm HeadHunter. 

On Thursday it was revealed that the number of positive Covid-19 tests in Russia had reached 3,548, a rise of 771 over the previous 24 hours. In total, 30 people have so far died from coronavirus in the world’s largest country.

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lizzie dw
lizzie dw
April 2, 2020

The Czech Republic reportedly has started #MASKS4ALL.
Idea: when you go out, wear a mask.
Reason: If you have the coronavirus a mask will prevent at least some of the micron sized virus from getting into the air. If you do NOT have coronavirus a mask will prevent at least some of the drops from hitting your face. Win-win.
The mask can be homemade – check youtube – or can be just a scarf.
It is better than nothing.

Olivia Kroth
April 3, 2020

TASS: Russia’s Rostec rolls out masks that protect against all kinds of microorganisms — The mask uses a TIOKRAFT photo catalysis filter — MOSCOW, April 3. /TASS/. Russia’s Rostec company has developed innovative anti-bacterial respirator masks that protect from viruses and all microorganisms, the state-owned corporation told TASS. The test batch of masks featuring the TIOKRAFT air purification technology was produced by the Ramensky Instrument Engineering Plant, a Rostec’s KRET subsidiary. The Rostec representative explained that air disinfection systems are a priority for the plant. “After we meet the primary demand, we plan to switch some of the plant’s powers… Read more »

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