Mayors, police support curfew extension
The police and Dutch mayors support the government's plan to extend the coronavirus curfew until March 2. The curfew was implemented on January 23 in an attempt to further reduce contacts between people and curb the spread of the highly contagious B117 coronavirus strain. According to the Security Council, which consists of the mayors that head the country's 25 security regions, the curfew is effective in that sense.
"We see that the curfew has worked quite well. It has resulted in fewer people visiting each other. And that's what it was about," Hubert Bruls, mayor of Nijmegen and head of the Security Council, said to broadcaster NOS. He added that it is important to keep a close eye on whether the curfew is reducing Covid-19 infections in the coming period.
The curfew is relatively easy to enforce, Bruls said. "It's easy: you're either indoors or out for a good reason. It's pretty easy to enforce."
The police agree that the curfew can be maintained in the coming weeks in terms of enforcement. "Enforcement since the introduction of the curfew is going well. We issued quite a few fines, even though most people simply adhere to the curfew or have the correct papers when they are on the street," a spokesperson for the National Police said to the broadcaster.
He added that the police are understaffed and overworked, which means that enforcing the curfew comes at the expense of something else. "We do not yet have an overview of what exactly has been left lying because of the curfew. That will be very fragmented, because it is determined locally. So it costs capacity, but can still be sustained. An extra three weeks will be achievable."