According to those trusty old ‘Hague Sources’, the Dutch government thinks that keeping the curfew should allow the easing of regulations elsewhere
Translated by Thomas Ansell
Yesterday afternoon, as the Netherlands basked in unseasonably warm temperatures, Mark Rutte’s ‘demissionair’ cabinet met at the Catshuys in Den Haag to discuss ongoing Coronavirus regulations. According to ‘Hague Sources’, and reported by the NOS, the current curfew is likely to be extended by three weeks from March 2.
The outgoing Dutch cabinet reportedly thinks that keeping the curfew (which affects young people the most) would allow other regulations to be eased, including opening some schools and allowing hairdressers to open. In order to get a cut or colour, says the Dutch government, people should book an appointment and salons must make sure that no-one has any Coronavirus-like symptoms before attending their appointment.
From Monday, March 1, it is also likely that some primary schools will re-open, with children likely to be in schools for approximately one and a half days per week. Middle school children will be allowed to attend classes in person one day per week, whilst universities and colleges are likely to remain completely shut. A cynic might point out that with Dutch elections coming up, Mark Rutte’s VVD party is unlikely to appeal to younger voters in any case.
The Dutch cabinet would also like to make it possible for people to visit ‘non-essential’ shops via appointment.
Outgoing Minister De Jonge sounded a word of caution, though: “we’re actually standing on the precipice of the ‘third wave’, which we already knew. On the other hand we see that lots of people are holding to the various regulations, and we have to give credit for that.”
On Tuesday evening De Jonge and Rutte will take to the stage for another press conference, where they will officially announce the changing regulations. Naturally, if infection figures rise again, a stronger lockdown will be enforced.