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‘The Netherlands Is Closing Down’ • A 5 Week Lockdown Begins Today

By Katherine Notman

‘The Netherlands Is Closing Down’ • A 5 Week Lockdown Begins Today

There will be a short break for people to meet at Christmas.

PM Mark Rutte announced yesterday that the country would head into a 5-week lockdown, starting today. ‘The Netherlands is closing down’, said Rutte, as protestors banged pots and pans together on the street. Restaurants and cafes have been closed for 2 months already, since October 14, but they have been able to offer takeaway and this will still be the case. However, these measures are more far-reaching than the ones we have been under since October.

So what has changed?

  • All non-essential shops will be closed, although supermarkets, butchers, and bakers can remain open.
  • Museums, cinemas, gyms, swimming pools, and similar public spaces are closed.
  • Schools will close on December 16.
  • From December 1, it will be mandatory for everyone over the age of 13 to wear a face mask in indoor public spaces. Anyone found breaking this rule can be fined €95.
  • From December 1, those who are at increased risk of catching COVID-19 but who don’t have symptoms will qualify for a test. If the CoronaMelder app alerts you, or you are contact traced, you will be able to get a test. As usual, you will need to self-isolate once you have been notified. After 5 days have passed you can get a test and, if it’s negative, you will no longer need to self-isolate.
  • People will only be allowed to receive 2 guests a day at their home. Anybody over the age of 13 counts towards the daily allotted total.
  • There will be a 3-day break over Christmas, during which people will be allowed to have 3 adult guests visit their home.

These measures will last until January 19. You can read more about the new restrictions on the City of Amsterdam website.

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