Confirmed: Belgium's terraces will officially reopen on 8 May

Confirmed: Belgium's terraces will officially reopen on 8 May
Credit: Jules Johnston/The Brussels Times

Belgium's Consultative Committee gave the official green light for the reopening of the country's terraces from 8 May, Prime Minister Alexander De Croo announced.

During a virtual meeting on Wednesday afternoon, the Committee agreed that the two conditions set for the opening of the terraces have been met, meaning that the curfew will be lifted and the "outdoor plan" will come into effect on 8 May.

By 8 May, over 80% (instead of the 70% that was required) of people over 65 years old will have been vaccinated, and the situation in the hospitals' intensive care units "is also better today than it was two weeks ago," the press release reads.

Besides the reopening of the terraces, the other elements of the outdoor plan will also take effect from then on: the curfew will be lifted, and be replaced by a ban on gatherings of more than three people (with an exception for larger households).

Events, cultural performances and worship services will also be able to take place outside with a maximum of 50 people.

Amusement parks will be able to reopen and professional flea markets will again be allowed, as will organised outdoor activities for up to 25 people and sports activities without an audience.

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Additionally, the Consultative Committee confirmed the decision to switch to full-time contact learning for the second and third grades of secondary education (pupils aged 15-18) from 10 May 2021, which was made by Belgium's different Education Ministers earlier on Wednesday.

Keeping schools open remains an essential objective, as it makes a vital contribution to the mental well-being of young people, the Committee stressed.

Maïthé Chini

The Brussels Times

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