Incidence rate in the Alpes Maritimes - The latest data from CovidTracker has shown that the incidence rate in the Alpes-Maritimes is 495 per 100,000 inhabitants. The incidence rate is the number of cases per 100,000 inhabitants during the last 7 days. Currently at 495 in the Alpes Maritimes this is a record in France where the national average is 193. Note that the European Union recommends banning access to regions or departments with an incidence rate exceeding 500.
Creche in Grasse closes due to cases of British variant amongst parents - A crèche in Grasse has closed due to two cases of the British variant identified amongst parents of children attending the establishment. La Voie Lactée crèche in Tignet announced the closure from today Monday 15th February, for three days. Contact cases have been placed in self-isolation as a precaution.
Fines issued after gathering on Croisette in Cannes - Twenty people including adults and children, have been stopped by police after gathering on Sunday lunchtime on the Croisette in Cannes. Setting up chairs and tables, enjoying a snack and a drink in the sunshine, the gathering was more than the rule of six which currently applies for gatherings in public spaces under Covid restrictions (unless otherwise authorised). Out of those present fifteen people were fined 135 euros each.
Hospital staff suffer side effects to vaccine - Several hospitals in western France have decided to stagger their vaccination campaigns after many health workers reported strong side effects such as flu-like symptoms, a few days after the first injections of the British AstraZeneca vaccine in France on February 6th. The hospitals in Brittany reported "high proportions of vaccinated people presenting side effects" leading to between 20 and 25% of the vaccinated staff in Brest to take time off work. 14,000 doses of the vaccine were delivered to Brittany last week, 15,600 are due to arrive next week. The vaccine requires two doses.
Minimum wage aid extended until May - France’s employment minister Elisabeth Borne has announced that for 400,000 precarious workers in France the 900 euro aid will be extended by three months. The exceptional aid created in November to guarantee a monthly income will be received until the end of May. The aid which has already benefited 400,000 people allows all those who worked at least 138 days on fixed term or temporary contracts in 2019 but who are unable to work enough in 2020, due to the health crisis, to benefit from a minimum income guarantee of 900 euros per month.
In other news
Shooting - Two people have been shot dead in Marseille. The shooting occurred on Saturday evening at around 8.30pm investigators are trying to determine whether it was a settlement of accounts. The victims were 24 year old rapper ZLK and his manager.
Minister warns of Marine Le Pen popularity - France’s Finance minister Bruno Le Maire has warned that victory for the far-right leader Marine Le Pen in next year's poll is a 'political possibility' that must be 'opposed'. Speaking to French media at the weekend and showing his support for current President Emmanuel Macron, Le Maire warned of a 'difficult' election campaign in a country that is 'crossed by movements of anger, of doubt which are very deep.' The minister added that 'In 2022, he would like Emmanuel Macron to be a candidate for the election, for presidency of the Republic, and that he will be at his side to ensure that he is re-elected.'
Le Maire spoke out after polls taken ahead of the first round of voting, due in April next year, showed support for Le Pen at record levels. An average of polling data showed support for Le Pen at 26 per cent, narrowly ahead of Macron on 24 per cent.
60-year-old holder of disability card fined - A 60-year-old holder of a disability card in Marseille has been fined nearly 150 times in two years for illegal parking in the city with her furniture due to be seized today Monday 15th February. Despite having a disability card, the woman has been ordered to pay 8,600 euros. Due to a loophole in the administrative system the woman claims that she must pay first and only then will the company seeking the outstanding fines consider her request to cancel them.
Local council validates reimbursement for damaged “cycling pants” - A moment which raised a few smiles at the first city council meeting of the year in Eze, as discussions turned to the “trouser case”. According to reports the local council of Eze has validated in principal, the reimbursement to a local resident of British origin for his “cycling pants” which were ruined due to wet paint. The man was riding his bike on January 27th when the incident occurred while stopping for a rest. There was no warning of wet paint. Local media has reported damages of 140 euros.