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Belgium closes non-essential shops until 13 December, further restricts social contacts

19:10 30/10/2020

Belgium has ordered non-essential stores, hairdressers, beauty salons and zoos to close from Monday, with new limits on social contacts in a bid to halt the rapid spread of coronavirus.

The latest measures, announced on Friday night, apply for six weeks, until 13 December. The closure of stores will be reviewed after four weeks, on 1 December.

Non-essential stores must close - although they can still offer a "click and collect" service where customers order online and pick up in-store.

Among the businesses that can remain open are supermarkets, convenience stores, pharmacies, DIY stores, garden centres, newsagents, bike shops and car mechanics. But hairdressers, beauty salons and massage parlours must close.

In terms of social contacts, each household can still have close contact with one person - someone you hug, kiss and with whom you spend more than 15 minutes without a mask.

Each household can invite one person to visit their home (if you live alone, two people, but not at the same time), down from the previous limit of four. Outdoors, the existing rule of maximum four people remains in place, with masks and distancing.

The autumn school holidays, which began tonight, have been extended further. Instead of returning to class on 12 November, pupils will have a full two weeks off school and return on Monday 16 November. Pupils in the third year of secondary school and above will resume with a 50:50 mix of in-person and distance learning.

Universities - which all recently entered "code red", scrapping in-person lectures - must maintain 100% distance learning until at least 13 December.

No restrictions on travel were announced. Foreign borders remain open, but travel is strongly discouraged. Remote working remains compulsory unless it is impossible to do so.

Belgium's nationwide curfew - from midnight to 5.00 - remains in place. The Walloon and Brussels regions will maintain their extended curfews from 22.00 to 6.00.

The number of people allowed at a funeral is 15. No reception can be organised afterwards. Hotels must close their restaurants, with guests only allowed to be served food in their room.

Written by The Bulletin


Frank Lee

Does 15 at funerals include the deceased?

Oct 30, 2020 20:16

Will the Commune offices be closed until 15th December also?

Oct 30, 2020 23:06
Frank Lee

If I need to buy underwear, I believe it's essential. Who decides what is essential or not? The Belgian government. People who believed communism died in 1989-1990 were seriously mistaken.

Oct 31, 2020 12:50

Rolling my eyes at some of the comments! Let’s be clear it’s at Frank Lee, so Frank do you think a deceased person cares if they are exposed to covid? So no a dead person will not be included in number because they aren’t a t risk. Plus will not wearing underwear mean you will die Immediately from that? You know that is not essential. I suspect you are just being ridiculous for the sake of it or maybe you think it humour

Oct 31, 2020 14:20

Is Frank Lee a dumb Trumper American? It sure sounds like it. If you need to buy some stupid underwear you can order it online, unless you're some slob who has only 1 pair for some reason?

And your reading comprehension is very poor, maybe you're a Russian bot? Because it clearly says supermarkets remain open, and all of the larger ones sell basics like socks and underwear. Unless you're some fancy nitwit who can't wear supermarket underwear? But if you seemingly only have one pair of underwear to begin with, you can't be all that fancy. Frankie.

Do us all a favor and be quiet while the adults are speaking, yeah? Cheers.

Oct 31, 2020 14:30
Frank Lee

Supermarkets will be barred from selling non-essentials. They were allowed during the last lockdown, but it was seen as unfair to the regular stores that had to close.
No, I don't actually need underwear (I wrote "if", but not all comprehend what they read), but what if someone does? You can replace the word "underwear" by any item of your choice. Sometimes, for some people, some items may become "essential."
I really enjoyed the response from the person trying to explain to me why a dead person isn't at risk of contracting the virus. Priceless.

Oct 31, 2020 15:50

Will alcohol will still be available in these stores?

Nov 2, 2020 08:12
John P

Are some commentators in here in the brigades of Censorship & Negative-Labeling police?

What FRANK LEE did (and 100's of millions of mentally healthy people do quite often) is called Satire (not to be confused with Satyr!)
It cauterizes the doings and sayings of politicians (mostly) since at least 2500 years ago.
Widely used as such by the ancient Greeks and Romans.
It's one of the cornerstones of Democracy and Free speech, both of which, some commentators in here, seem to have a very narrow understanding of.
I can only suppose that this is what happens to someone who loves wearing a breathing impairing device 24/7 "just to be on the safe side", it burns-up whatever few brain cells they had to begin with.

Just to make something clear about the ridiculousness of the "essential stores and items". During the 1st lockdown, (when we were terrorized into disinfecting everything we brought into our homes and every surface around us), a large Belgian supermarket had banned the sale of cleaning and rubbing alcohol as NON essential!

Final note: Contrary to some in here, I personally, do realize that this medium is absolutely NOT suitable for dialogue, so, do not consider my comment as a reply to them, but as something which may have value to other readers.

Nov 2, 2020 09:03

After studying the scientific evidence for the transmission of viral diseases, it is by no means certain, that a disease such as Covid could not be spread by a deceased person. As a potential vector for the disease, the deceased should be included in the 15 permitted mourners. To make it clearer I would respectfully suggest that the health minister explains this to the public at large, in specifying that the number of people attending a funeral is 14 + 1 or 13 + 2 if such tragic circumstances occurred where two persons were to be buried at the same time. A simple mathematical formula could be established N = 15 - d where N is the number of living persons authorised to attend the funeral and d is the number of deceased persons actually present. As with other political statements, I think this would go a long way to simplifying a rather sensitive situation.

Nov 3, 2020 22:05