Law about the protection of Christian, Jewish and stately holidays in Northrhine Westphalia, Federal Republic of Germany from April, 23rd 1989


§ 1


(1) Sundays and holdays are protected by the contents of this law

(2) The protection of holdays is good for midnight to midnight, as far as nothing elsewhere different is decided..

§ 2


(1) Holidays are:


The New Year Day Jan. 1st


the Good Friday


Easter Sunday and Easter Monday


The May 1st to be the day of confession to freedom and peace, social justice, reconciliation of the peoples and dignity of men.


the day of Jesus Ascension


the Whit - Sunday and Monday


the Corpus Christi Day (regulary on Thursdays)


the June 17th the Day of the German Unity has been superseeded meanwhile by the October 3rd


the All Saint´s Day, Nov. 1st


the Day of Repentance and Prayer, the former Day of Hero - Worship of the Franco - German war of 1870/71 has been abolished in the meanwhily with the exception of Saxonia


the first Christmasday


the second Christmasday


(2) Remenbrance days are:


the National Day of Mourning (Volkstrauertag) (second sunday before the 1st Advent)


the Totensonntag (day of Mourning to the victims of the 1st and 2nd World - War)der Totensonntag (last dunday before the 1sr Advent)

§ 3

Interdiction of labor

All public labors which can be noticed in public are forbidden on sundays and holidays, if they will be good for deranging the exterior silence of the days, as far as they are not allowed especially. Unnecessary troubles and noises are to be avoided at allowed lobors. Also surrounds and chivvies are forbidden.

§ 4

Exceptions of the interdictions of labor

On sundays and holidays are allowed:


All commercial labors including trading whose carring on is explicitely allowed by the federal or confederate right in general or exceptionally.


The lobors of public and private enterprises of traffic - services icluding the depending enterprises serving the necessaries of the traffic (for example filling - stations, garages, spare parts depots, watching over motor - cars etc.), but the repairings of transportations are only allowed as far as they are necassaey to allow to continue the drive or they allowed by numero 1.


urgent labors which are necessary...
a) order to hinder an emergency or in the interst of public istitution and organziations
b) .. in order to hinder an immense demage at health and property
c) ... in oder to satisfy urgent domestic or agriculture necessarities.


Non profit making labors in the gardens, and which are not serving to the commercial cleaning of areas serving the recreation of people.


Lobors serving the necessarities of recreation of people. Especially the opening of saunas, solariums and gyms.

§ 5

Forbidden events

(1) The follwing events are forbidden on sundays and holidays during the main time of ther services


public events and meatings under the open sky and public processions which are not depending from the service


all events serving scientific reasons without an privileged interest of the arts, scientific or the education of people.


public events in closed rooms as far as the service will be disturbed by them.


bigger sportive events and such ones who distrube the service in a direct way.

This prohibition is not obligatory for events of the unions at May 1st. The main time of the services is bound to be from 6 to 11 o´clock a. m. The local authority for public policy can define the end of the main time of the services earlier than 11 o´ clock a. m. with the allowance of the churches.

(2) As far as markets are allowed on sundays and holidays they may start already after the local usual time of the main services. The local usual time of the main services is scheduled by the local authority for public policy in agreement with the churches and may not be longer than two hours and has to be placed in the main time of the services.

§ 6

Silent holidays

(1) Additional forbidden on the National Day of Mournings (Volkstrauertag) and on the Day of Repentance and Prayer are...


markets, commercial exhibitions and similar events from 5 o´ clock a. m. to 1 o´ clock p. m.


sportive and similar events including horse races, horse exhibitions, and circus - performances, public merry - makings and the opening of event halls as far as they offer dancing or artistic entertainements from 5 o´clock a. m. to 6 o´ clock p. m.


the opening of gambling - houses and similar enterprises and the commercial acception of bets from 5 o´cloch a. m. to 6 o´clock p. m.


musicalic and other entertaining show acts of all kind in restaurants and in next rooms with licensed premises from 5 o´ clock a. m. to 6 o´ clock p. m.


all other events serving the entertainment icluding dancing from 5 o´ clock a. m. to 6 o´clock p. m.


(2) Additional forbidden on All Saints Day and the Totensonntag (Day of Mourning to the victims of the 1st and 2nd World - War) are:

all events called in chapter 1 from 5 o´clock a. m. to 6 o´clock p. m.

(3) Additional forbidden in Good Friday are:


all events called in chapter 1 till the next day 6 o´clock a. m. with the exception of central markest which are forbidden till the next day 3 o´ clock a. m.


all private entertaining events outside from flats / apartments till the next day 6 o´ clock a. m.


the performance of movie pictures which are not respected to be suitable to be represented on Good Fridays by the Minister of Education and Public Worship or somebody who is bounded by him till the next day 6 o´ clock a. m.


Events, theater-, musical - events, the performances of mowie pictures and discourses of all kind also with a serious character during the main time of the service.

(4) Radio- and television - emissions are obligated to pay regard to the serious character of the silent holidays in the time from 5 o´clock a. m to 6 o´clock p. m (stop 1 and 2) respectively from 0 o´clock a. m. till the next day 6 o´clock a. m. (stop 3).§ 7

Further prohibitions:

(1) Public dancing is forbidden from 6 o´clock p. m. on Maunday - Thurday

(2) § 5 stop 1 letter a and § 6 stop 1 are employed equivalent to the evenig of the first Christmas - Day after 4 o´ clock p. m..

§ 8

Churchly holidays

(1) Churchly holidays are holidays which are celebrated by the churches or religious communities besides the holidays called in § 2.

(2) The management has to offer their employes and apprentices which are belonging to the respected church or religious community the possibility to visit the service, as far as there are not any urgent orders or priority tasks to be done. The employers may not suffer further disadvantages than a possible wage loss for the misse time of working because of their staying away.

(3) Churchly holidays are protected regarding to § 5 stop 1 in towns in which at least 40 % of the population are celebrating the holiday or where the general respect of the holiday has been given for years by habit. The Regierungspräsident (chief of the county - gouvernment) will decide in cases of doubt.

§ 9

Jewish holidays

(1) on the following Jewish holidays:


on New Years Days (two days)


on Day of Atonement and the day before from 6 o´ clock p. m.

...are forbidden in the near of synagogues and other rooms serving for religious reasons to the Jewish parishes during the time of the main services:


all avoidable actions producing noises


public meetings, processions.

(2) The local usual time of the main service is fixed by the local authority for public policy in agreement with the Jewish parish.

(3) The Jewish employers and officials of public and private enterprises and administrations have got the right to stay away from their work. Further disadvantages than a possible wage loss for the missed time of working may not be accepted for them because of their stayin away.

§ 10

Exceptions from prohibitions

(1) If there is an urgent necessarity exceptions of the prohibitions of the §§ 3 and 5 to 7 can be allowed as far as they do not cause an immense prejudice of the protection of sundays and holidays. The allowance of this exceptions can be given in the long run reservedly of revocation. You may not accept an immense prejudice at the arrangement of markets and commercial exhibitions whitout entertaining charcters. The same is given for sportive and similar events as far as they are take place in closed rooms.

(2) The local authority for public policy is competent to grant the allowance of exceptions in the cases of §§ 3 and 5 by § 7 of the law for the authirity for public policy, the Regierungspräsident (chief of county government) in cases of the §§ 6 and 7.

§ 11

Direction for fines:

(1) You act against the orders, if you...


are doing public noticable works which are suitable to disturbe the exterieur silence of sundays and holidays opposing § 3 stop 1, or if you cause avoidable disturbances or noises opposing § 3 stop 2 because if unallowed work (§ 4).


are making huntings opposing § 3 stop 3 on sundays and hoilidays


are managing events on sundays and holidays during the main time of services opposing § 5 stop 1 of the their there identified kind.


are opposing on silent holidays (§ 6) or at the last evening before Christmas a prohibition of entertaining or commercial events by § 6 stop 1 to 3, § 7 stop 2.


are managing a public dancing on Maundy Thursday after 6 o´clock p. m. opposing § 7 stop 1.


are an employer and you are refusing the chance to your employers and apprentices being members of the regarding church or religious community by § 8 stop 2 sentence 1 on churchly holidays to visit the service.


are managing events at kind desgned by § 5 stop 1 on churchly holidays during the main time of the service.


are making avoidable noise in the near of synagogues or other rooms being used for services of the Jewish parish during the mean time of the service or if you are managing puplic events or processions opposing § 9 stop 1

(2) The irregularity can be punished by a fine.

(3) The administrative authorithy in the sence of § 36 stop 1 no. 1 of the law about irregularities is the local authoriuthy for public policy.

§ 12

Ristrictions of basic rights

The basic right of freedom of public meeting (article 8 stop 2 of the German basic law) is ristricted by § 5 stop 1, § 6, § 7 stop 2, § 8 stop 3 and § 9 stop 1.

§ 13

Directions for the administration

The Minister of the Interior issues in good terms with the Minister of Culture and the Minister of Labor, Health and Social Affaires the directions for the administration in order to employ the law.

§ 14

Coming into force

The law will come into force one day after its declaration.

No guarantee for corectness and possible mistakes during my translation,

Joachim Kossmann