Sending a letter is one step before considering actually taking action
In a letter to students in Groningen, Mayor Koen Schuiling has threatened to take strict local measures if the number of Coronavirus cases in the city continue to rise. According to Schuiling, the Coronavirus situation in Groningen is not developing well: “there has been a sharp rise in the number of infections in recent weeks. At least half of those infections have been amongst young people – students, which is why I am making an urgent appeal to you in this letter.”
According to Schuiling, the infections are mainly occurring in private houses, and in student society-owned houses. “This means that while you’re enjoying life, you’re also transmitting the virus. Consciously or unconsciously, too many young people are still coming together and are not observing social distancing: at home, in the Noorderplantsoen, on the city beach, or in restaurants and cafes. This really isn’t possible now”, writes Schuiling.
The Mayor says that limiting the number of infections is a task for everyone, including young people and students. “My question to you is to find out what else you can do to limit the number of infections. Why are you in these overcrowded places anyway? Why don’t you observe the one and a half metre social distancing rule? What does it mean if ignoring those few simple rules, means that you or your fellow student has to stop his or her internship or placement? And when we have to take stricter measures again so that you incur study delay, you cannot do an internship or there is even less physical education? Do you think it’s worth it?”
“I urge you and all other students in Groningen to avoid us having to implement strict local measures. If you have any coronavirus symptoms, make an appointment via 0800-1202 and get tested. Have you been tested? If you have, stay at home. Does your housemate have any symptoms? If so, stay at home and wait until he or she has their test results.”
The mayor closes the letter by reminding the students and their friends of their responsibility. “The number of infections and contact with infected people in Groningen really must be reduced. Together we can do that! I am counting on you.”
The letter has also been signed by the chairmen of the Hanze University College and the University of Groningen.