Mandatory work from home, travel restrictions possible curfew alternative
The Outbreak Management Team is considering making working from home mandatory and restricting movement to a maximum of 15 kilometers from your home as alternative options for a curfew. These alternatives were discussed with the Security Council, which consists of the mayors that head the 25 security regions in the country, Security Council chairman Hubert Bruls confirmed to De Gelderlander.
The mayors on the security council are vehemently against a curfew, especially if it is not absolutely clear what its affect will be on the number of coronavirus infections. "Because it is a severe measure," said Bruls, who is also the mayor of Nijmengen. "It has an effect, such a curfew, also psychologically. This lockdown is already tough and if you do something like a curfew, which makes people think of war, you need to have a good story to tell."
The OMT will therefore look into whether making work-from-home mandatory for professions where this is possible, or limiting people's movements to no more than 15 kilometers from their home, will have more of an effect on the coronavirus infections. The results will be given to the cabinet in an emergency advice on curfew in the coming days, according to the newspaper.
On Tuesday evening, Prime Minister Mark Rutte extended the hard lockdown the Netherlands has been in since December 15 to at least February 9. He said that the government is definitely considering imposing a curfew, but added that the Cabinet must also take into account the difficulty of the lockdown situation for many people.
“A curfew is a drastic measure that no one is hoping for,” Rutte said. “That is why there is a lot to be said for getting the maximum effect. We are going to ask the OMT for urgent advice on what a curfew can bring us."