Initially, fines, for example for violating the meter and a half or being on the street with too many people, were 390 euros. This also led to an entry in the judicial documentation, or a criminal record.
Many people thought this was quite a severe sanction, which was also imposed on many young people and which could bother them in the future. It was therefore decided to reduce the fines, because fines under 100 euros do not lead to a criminal record. In October, the corona law decided to reduce the fine for violating the corona measures from 390 to 95 euros.
Bad tongues claimed that this was mainly to save the political career of Justice Minister Ferd Grapperhaus, who had violated the corona measures on his own marriage.
Still, the fine of 95 euros is the lowest of all surrounding European countries. Jan Struijs of the Police Union thinks the 95 euros is far too little. “With such a huge measure comes an appropriate and higher fine,” he said earlier.
Curfew other European countries + amount of fine
France: curfew between 6pm and 6am. Fine 135 euros.
Italy: Curfews apply in all regions from 10 PM to 5 AM. Fine 400 euros.
Belgium: In Flanders, a curfew applies between midnight and 5 a.m. and in Wallonia and Brussels between 10 p.m. and 6 a.m. Fine for violation is 250 euros.
Germany: Not all of Germany has a curfew. In parts of Bavaria, Saxony and Baden-Württemberg, one does apply between 8:00 PM and 5:00 AM. There, a fine can be up to 500 euros.
Spain: There is a general curfew from 11 PM to 6 AM. The autonomous regions may deviate from these times. The fines vary from 60 to 600 euros.
Greece: There is a nationwide curfew between 9:00 PM and 5:00 AM. Fine 300 euros.
Higher fine, more serious offense
Professor of behavioral psychology at the University of Amsterdam Frenk van Harreveld puts the deterrent effect of high fines into perspective. “During discussions it is often said that higher and harder punishments would deter people from breaking the law. But research shows that the influence of higher fines is very limited.”
Van Harreveld points out that people could deduce the seriousness of the crime from the level of the fine. “The lower the fine, the fewer people think the offense represents anything. But the size of the fine does not necessarily lead to more compliance.”
Estimate the chance of being caught
There is something else that, according to the Amsterdam professor, works much better than a high fine: how big people estimate the chance of being caught. “The fact that you are being arrested and punished has much more impact than the amount of the fine.”
Professor of clinical psychology at the Free University of Brussels Jan Derksen also does not believe in the beneficial effects of fines.
“If you want to change behavior, you have to reward. If you punish that behavior only temporarily suppressed. A few weeks, maybe a month. So it would be better to reward people. For example, I have already proposed stimulating people to take a vaccine. every hundredth person who passes a vaccination win a prize. “
In the same way, he also thinks it would be better to hold out the prospect of something to young people if they adhere to the corona measures, including the curfew.
“The cabinet could organize a large free festival in June. Or at various locations throughout the country. Having fun at the expense of the government works much better than heavy fines.”