Austrians who Refuse Vaccination to Face $4,071 Fine

The government in Austria has announced its plan to fine people for refusing compulsory COVID-19 vaccination every three months.

As infections set records three weeks ago, the government announced a fourth national lockdown and said it would make vaccinations compulsory for all, the first European Union country to do so.

“We do not want to punish people who are not vaccinated. We want to win them over and convince them to get vaccinated,” Minister for Constitutional Affairs Karoline Edtstadler said on Thursday.

Officials said the fine of $4,071 (3,600 euros) would apply to people 14 years old and older.

The vaccine mandate would be implemented from February 2022 through January 2024 if approved by the parliament.

Health Minister Wolfgang Mueckstein said there would be quarterly vaccination deadlines, and authorities would check a central vaccination register to see if members of the public are in it.

“If that is not the case, proceedings will be brought. In regular proceedings, the amount of the fine is 3,600 euros,” Mueckstein said.

Mueckstein also said that people’s status would be taken into account in calculating fines.

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