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Germany: North Rhine-Westphalia, Catholic Workers’ Movement and Youth Federation against shops open on Christmas Eve

“Christmas Eve should not be regarded as an opportunity for spoiling the well-deserved Christmas feast with shopping”: Maria Etl, national president of the German Catholic Workers’ Movement (Kab), stated, speaking of the decisions taken in some lander, such as North Rhine–Westphalia, to let shops be open on Sunday, December 24th, even if that’s Christmas Eve. Kab convened its members and asked them to go to the shops that are open on December 24th and tell them about being against having shops open for Christmas. Temporary opening on Christmas Eve is allowed in some federal states, including North Rhine–Westphalia, on condition they sell food and drinks: Maria Etl also pointed out that several national chain stores have taken position against opening on Christmas Eve and, according to Kab, a mere twenty per cent of businesses in North Rhine–Westphalia would be working on December 24th. The German Catholic Youth Federation (Bdkj) too confirmed it is firmly against having stores open on Christmas Eve: “Shopping on Christmas Eve? I won’t!”, Kerstin Stegemann, regional president of the German Catholic Youth Federation of North Rhine–Westphalia, stated. “I am glad I won’t be working on Christmas Eve myself, so I’ll have time to stay with my family and have a day of rest. So, I don’t expect other people to work on that day, unless they have to”.

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