Museums must be considered as a basic necessity in terms of cultural identification, social ties and individual well-being, the associations representing them in Brussels, Wallonia and the French-speaking region insisted on Thursday, on the eve of a Consultative Committee meeting.
"They must reopen without delay and remain open," the associations demanded.
Since 18 May, museums have applied and maintained strict protocols by reducing capacity to 10 square metres per person, strongly recommending reservations or even making them compulsory, and by enforcing masks and hand disinfection, they said.
In addition, the museums enforced separate entry and exit flows, routes imposed to avoid crossings, and time slots to avoid queues outside the buildings.
Staff and visitors have all complied with the rules, they said, making the probability of transmission of the virus very low. In view of that fact, they do not understand the imposed closure.
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They also insist on "the need to maintain the accompanying and economic support measures in view of the very difficult financial situation in which the museums and their staff currently find themselves.”
"At a time when the reopening of non-essential shops is on the negotiating table, we want the reopening of museums to be taken into account as much for the viability of their structures as for their contribution to the well-being of the population", conclude the representatives of the sector.
However, Prime Minister Alexander De Croo has warned not to expect big relaxations from the Consultative Committee meeting on Friday, as the government doesn't want to "ruin 4 weeks of progress in 4 days."
Click here to see what's on the agenda for the Consultative Committee meeting on Friday.
The Brussels Times