Today the Consultation Committee meets again. In addition, as agreed at the previous Consultation Committee, it will be decided whether the hairdressers will be allowed to open again next weekend. In addition, the reopening of zoos and holiday parks is also on the table.
It is an important day for hairdressers in our country because today they finally get to hear whether they will be able to open their doors again next week. In addition, a few other things are on the conference table.
The big question on the Consultation Committee today is whether hairdressers can open their doors again. The hairdressers themselves have been asking for a reopening for a long time and the demand from customers is also high. Prime Minister Alexander De Croo announced at the previous Consultation Committee that the hairdressers could possibly reopen on Saturday, February 13, provided that the figures related to the corona virus in our country had fallen by then. The decision would then be taken a week earlier and that day has arrived today.
When we look at the corona figures in our country, we see that they are generally heading in the right direction. For example, the number of deaths has now been falling sharply for three days in a row and the number of hospital admissions continues to fall. The number of new infections is increasing, but that is mainly related to an increasing number of tests. As a result, many hairdressers hope that they will hear good news today.
However, virologists have said in recent days that they are not in favor of reopening the barbershop. But Prime Minister De Croo declared in the Chamber yesterday that he sees the reopening of hairdressers as a “social necessity”. As a result, there seems to be a good chance that the hairdressers will indeed be able to receive customers again next week.
If the hairdressers are actually allowed to open their doors again, this will of course be under strict conditions. That is also being decided today. Hairdressers will probably only be allowed to receive one customer per 10 square meters. Customers will also have to wait outside for their appointment and the matter must be disinfected after each customer. All customers must wear a face mask, hairdressers themselves may be required to wear an FFP2 mask.
In addition, we also have to wait and see what will be decided on the other contact professions. These have also been asking for a reopening for a long time, but have not yet been mentioned.
Zoos and holiday parks
The reopening of zoos and holiday parks in our country is also on the table. Earlier this week, the Council of State ruled that the closure of holiday parks and campsites is discriminatory. Hotels are allowed to open their doors, while holiday parks and camping sites are not allowed to. Because the Council of State ruled yesterday that the closure of holiday parks and camping sites is discriminatory, the provision will be suspended on Monday 8 February. The Consultation Committee will therefore have to decide today whether the holiday parks and camping sites may open their doors or they will have to give better arguments to justify a closure.
Other easing does not seem to be appropriate at the moment. So today we should not expect a date for the reopening of catering establishments or fitness centers.