Monday, August 8

Concern in Italy over the “crown parties” of an anti-vaccine stronghold on the Austrian border

Initially arising in Germany and Austria, the so-called “crown parties” consist of social gatherings in a house in which at least one person is infected with COVID-19 and the others try to catch it. It is a strategy that aims to pass the disease, with the risks that it entails for the person and for the community to which it can infect, and achieve immunity without having to be vaccinated.

The Public Prosecutor’s Office in Bolzano, the capital of the Alto Adige region, bordering Austria and also German-speaking, has opened an investigation after the forces of order have detected this trend after identifying hospitalized participants.

Like Germany and Austria, the region has a markedly lower vaccination rate than the rest of the country. If in Italy 84% of the population over 12 years of age has the complete pattern, in Alto Adige the figure is 78%. At a press conference on Tuesday, the governor of Alto Adige, Arno Kompatscher, announced new restrictions for twenty municipalities with a vaccination rate below 70%, including a curfew starting at eight in the afternoon.

Kompatscher said that he had received evidence of “crown parties” in the region but that “it is not a very widespread phenomenon.” He warned of the serious damage that was being done to public health in the area, which is seeing the pressure on its hospitals increase after days in which cases are on the rise.

A doctor’s alarm

The alarm was raised by a doctor at a hospital where a young man arrived with complications from COVID-19 and explained that he had been infected on purpose to obtain the antibodies and be able to have the COVID passport, called Green Pass in Italy, explains to the vice coordinator of the COVID emergency in Bolzano, Patrick Franzoni.

After this first case, the health authorities began to question young patients and two more hospitalized patients have been detected. The region’s governor told the press conference that around 20 parties were believed to have been held, but investigations remain open.

Franzoni says that, for the most part, these are young people who do not want to be vaccinated and that, through social networks, “they probably agree to see each other in closed spaces for a better contagion.” But he also highlights that although young people are the Drivers have also been cases of older people, up to about 60 years.

Germanic world

In his opinion, it is no coincidence that this phenomenon, which arose in German-speaking countries such as Germany and Austria, has reached the southern Italian region. “It is something typical of the Germanic world, which has always been very suspicious of vaccines,” says Franzoni.

At the moment, it seems difficult for the controversy to spread to the rest of Italy, but it is added as one more element to the demonstrations of anti-vaccine groups – led by the extreme right – against the Government, which have been repeated in several cities .

Northeast Italy has stood out for its high belligerence over the imposition of the Green Pass for practically any social activity and for the workplace. The port of Trieste – near the Trentino region – experienced a partial strike for days by workers protesting against the obligation of the Green Pass to go to work.

The central government has not taken new measures, but some regional governors are asking it to apply restrictions that affect only those citizens who are not vaccinated.