Labour party fears confusion over "patchwork" of Covid rules as more regions announce measures

Opposition party PvdA fears that regional measures against the coronavirus will only lead to uncertainty among the population. Party leader Lodewijk Asscher wants the government to clarify how it plans to prevent people from not understanding the corona rules and thereby not following them. "How is it prevented that a patchwork of unclear local rules is created?" Asscher asked in a letter to Public Health Minister Hugo de Jonge, NOS reports.

In Amsterdam, everyone aged 13 and older will be required to wear a mask in The Red Light District, on shopping streets Kalverstraat and Nieuwendijk in the city center, on Plein '40 - '45, and Albert Cuypstraat from August 5. The same rule will apply in Rotterdam on Coolsingel, Lijnbaan, Meent, and Binnenweplein, as well as in covered shopping centers Alexandrium and Zuidplein, and the markets at Afrkaanderplein, De Binnenrotte, and Visserplein.

The city of Groningen announced that it is implementing an entry stop for the catering industry in the city center over weekends. No one will be allowed to enter a cafe or bar after 1:30 a.m. on Saturday and Sunday mornings. People who are still inside can stay until closing time. The terraces in the city center must close at 1:30 a.m. and be empty by 2:00 a.m. Eateries and night shops also have to close at 1:30 a.m., and no laughing gas may be sold after that time. 

Catering establishments that do not comply with the new rules will be closed temporarily, the local security region said to NOS. The measures take effect on Friday and will apply indefinitely. 

Veiligheidsregio IJsseland announced that it will carry out extra strict checks on compliance with coronavirus rules over the weekend. This security region covers all of Overijssel, except Twente. Last weekend, similar checks were carried out, resulting in the temporary closure of a few catering businesses. A spokesperson for the security region told NOS that extra checks will be done this weekend too because of the hot weather "We expect beautiful weather this weekend, and with it increasing crowds in the various recreational areas. That requires us to check more there too. We'll pay special attention to the distance rule."

According to PvdA leader Asscher, all these different rules will just lead to confusion among Netherlands residents, which could result in them not following the rules. He therefore wants the government to make an overview of all measures taken by local authorities. He also wants to know how the government will monitor exactly what the municipalities and security regions are doing. 

The Tweede Kamer, the lower house of Dutch parliament, will debate the latest coronavirus approach in two weeks. Minister De Jonge is currently on holiday, but he may decide to answer these questions in writing before the debate.