“The bottom line is that we are doing our best, but the virus is doing better”, said the Dutch corona minister Hugo de Jonge (CDA) during the press conference on Monday evening. The cabinet is announcing stricter measures due to rapidly rising infections. “It’s escalating so fast that we’re in danger of lagging behind the virus, with a map that’s fast turning red,” said Rutte. De Jonge: “Over 100,000 people are contagious today.”
Because of these rising infections, the hospitality sector (which also includes most student associations) will close at 10 pm starting on Tuesday. People are not allowed in from 9 pm onward. A maximum of thirty people are allowed inside rooms, forty people outdoors. The urgent advice for at home is: “No more than three people aged thirteen and over should visit,” Rutte stated.
Work from home, unless there is no other option
The government also wants people to work more from home. Rutte: “Work from home unless there is really no other option. That measure had a significant effect in the spring. For employers: take responsibility and arrange this together. No teambuilding or company outings. However, if there are any infections, a decision can be made to close a workplace for a fortnight.” It is not yet clear as to how Erasmus University will deal with this.
Specifically, for Amsterdam, Rotterdam, The Hague and Eindhoven, from tomorrow evening the advice will be wear a face mask in shops and bars and restaurants. This is a recommendation and not a mandatory obligation, shopkeepers and bar and restaurant managers are permitted to make this their door policy and, on that basis, turn away people who do not wear one.
The measures will be in force for three weeks. The Cabinet expects that the effects of these measures will only be noticeable within ten to fourteen days. So, or the time being, infection rates will continue to rise. Should the infection rates increase after three weeks, the Cabinet will take more drastic measures. “Then we will go back towards a lockdown-light,” Rutte said.
A spokesperson for Erasmus University said that there will be a consultation meeting on Tuesday about what these measures will mean for students and staff.