Belgian Prime Minister Alexander De Croo has announced a national lockdown will go into place on Monday when the government will attempt to stamp out the social life of its citizens in hopes of cutting down on COVID-19 infections and deaths.
The lockdown – described as “reinforced” – will be in place for at least 6 weeks and will shut down “non-essential” businesses amongst other strict social measures.
“We took the decision of a reinforced lockdown,” De Croo said. “These are the last-chance measures.”
At the moment, there is only one choice, and that is for all of us to support our healthcare sector as much as we can. We have to limit our physical contacts as much as possible.
The new measures will attempt to restrict anyone from receiving visitors at home, with the exception of a single “cuddle-contact.” People living alone will be allowed to have two cuddle-contacts. ( … that isn’t creepily dystopian by any means … )
Outdoor gatherings will be limited to 4 people while requiring face masks and social distancing.
Teleworking will be mandatory for all professions who can pull it off.
Professions that require close contact such as hairdressing will be made illegal while funerals can take place with up to 15 people, without a ceremony afterward.
Belgian Health Minister Frank Vandenbroucke said that “this is going to bring our social life to a complete standstill. That’s hard, that’s a lockdown.”
The country now has more patients in its hospitals with COVID-19 than at the peak of the first wave in early spring, reports Euro News. On Friday, 6,187 people were hospitalized with the virus.
Belgium’s lockdown follows similar actions from France and Germany to control their citizens in hopes to dampening the spread of COVID-19.
As we continually point out with our lockdown coverage, the idea of using lockdowns – at least as a primary method of virus control – is now being rejected as a first line of defense from COVID officials within the World Health Organization.
“You don’t want to use those as your primary, and I stress that, primary, means of containment. Because in the end living with the virus as a constant threat means maintaining the capacity to find people with the disease and isolating them,” UN Special Envoy on COVID David Nabarro has said.
Director of Field Operations and Technical Cooperation for the UN Human Rights Office, Georgette Gagnon, recently stated that her office has observed a slew of human rights abuses when it comes to lockdown enforcement.
“The U.N. Human Rights Office has observed a range of human rights violations in the context of the COVID-19 exceptional measures and states of emergency imposed by several states, and across several regions,” Gagnon said, citing specific examples from Africa, Asia, Europe and the Americas. “A main concern on exceptional and emergency natural measures is what’s been described as a toxic lockdown culture in some countries.”
Anti-lockdown protests have been widespread throughout Europe, appearing in the UK, Belgium, Poland, Italy, France and Germany.
Now that lockdowns have gone to the extremes of government mandating how many “cuddle-contacts” its people can have, the only question that remains now is – how much more tyranny will its people take?