Covid-19: Government clarifies ban on gatherings

Covid-19: Sign in Amsterdam's Oosterpark instructing people to stay 1.5 meters apart
Covid-19: Sign in Amsterdam's Oosterpark instructing people to stay 1.5 meters apartNL TimesNL Times

To make sure everyone understands new measures implemented to curb the spread of coronavirus Covid-19, the government published some clarifications on exactly what type of gatherings are banned and what is allowed. In general, groups of three or more people are banned, and stores, markets, public transit, and locations like parks and beaches must close if insufficient hygiene measures are taken and people are unlikely to keep 1.5 meters apart. 

There is an outright ban on forming groups of three or more people in a public space - accidentally or otherwise. This means groups consisting of three or more people who are not 1.5 meters a part. Excluded from this are households, and children up to the age of 12 under the supervision of parents or guardians - provided the parents or guardians from different families are 1.5 meters apart

All events requiring a permit or registration with the authorities are banned until June 1st. All other gatherings of three or more people are also banned, with a few exceptions. Statutory meetings, like meetings of the city council or States General, are allowed with a maximum of 100 attendees. Meetings necessary for the continuation of the daily activities of business, institutions and other organizations are allowed with a maximum of 100 attendees.

Funerals and wedding ceremonies can continue with a maximum of 30 people. And meetings of a religious or philosophical nature can also keep happening with a maximum of 30 people.

All these gatherings may only happen if all hygiene measures to combat the coronavirus are observed, and if people keep at least 1.5 meters apart.

Casinos, arcades and comparable institutions are ordered closed. As are businesses involving professions in which people make physical contact with each other and it is impossible to keep 1.5 meters apart, such as hair salons, massage parlors and nail salons. An exception is made for the medical or paramedical professions, provided that the treatment is medically necessary and the practitioner can comply with all hygiene requirements.

Shops, markets, and public transport must close if they don't comply with all hygiene measures and people aren't kept 1.5 meters apart. For this reason, supermarkets in the Netherlands implemented a door policy on Tuesday. The same goes for locations like holiday parks, camping sites, parks, nature reserves, and beaches.

Mayors are allowed to order such locations closed, and to fine people who violate the ban on forming groups. 

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