Largest city mayors, catering group annoyed by extended cafe terrace shutdown
The mayors of the four major cities in the Netherlands have expressed their disappointment with the government's decision to postpone relaxing the coronavirus measures. In a joint statement, they have again called upon the cabinet to reopen the terraces.
On Sunday it was announced that the possible reopening of cafe terraces and the elimination of the nightly mandatory curfew would be postponed by at least a week, as coronavirus infections began to rise again several days after the Easter holiday.
”In order to prevent infections by illegal gatherings and for the credibility of the coronavirus policies, controlled opening of the outdoor spaces is necessary,” the mayors of Amsterdam, Rotterdam, The Hague and Utrecht said.
At the beginning of this month, the mayors spoke in strong support for the reopening of terraces despite a relatively high number of daily coronavirus infections. They warned that the spring weather will lead to an increased number of gatherings in parks and other public spaces, and opening up terraces allows them to spread out the crowds.
The representatives of industries that were expected to see gradual reopening later this month expressed their dissatisfaction with the newest decision as well, with the hospitality sector union (KHN) calling it ”a hard slap in the face for all the entrepreneurs in the hospitality sector.” They once again emphasized their sector would be able to reopen safely and responsibly.
The highest single-day tally since March 27 was recorded on Sunday, with 8,288 new infections of SARS-CoV-2 reported by the national public health agency RIVM.