Flemish skateparks and football fields can reopen from Monday

Flemish skateparks and football fields can reopen from Monday
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The Flemish government decided that local sports courts and skateparks can also reopen from Monday, allowing children who are not part of a sports club to play outside, under adult supervision, as well.

On Friday, the Flemish government decided that children will also be allowed to play on local football fields, basketball courts and skateparks from Monday, under adult supervision, following calls from Flemish Youth Minister Benjamin Dalle to "make children a priority" in the next stage of the exit plan.

The Flemish government's decision is in line with the measures announced by the National Security Council on Wednesday, which will allow outdoor sports with a maximum of 20 people. Dalle said on Thursday that he was afraid this measure would exclude children who were not part of a sports club.

Playgrounds, however, will remain closed for now, and the social distance of 1.5 metres will still need to be respected at all times.

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"I am very happy that, today, it is clear that not only children who are members of a sports club will be able to play sports," Dalle said in a press release.

The children can be supervised by "a local sports trainer," but also by "an adult supervisor of a youth club of a local government," Dalle said. This means that parents would not be allowed to just take their children to a skate park.

"We should not only focus on the economy, but also work on a social recovery plan that pays attention to the psychological well-being of our citizens and children," said Somers. "Children who are not members of a sports club should also be given the opportunity to exercise and move around outdoors. This is no superfluous luxury, because many children have been indoors for a long time," he added.

"I am convinced that local solutions can be found to make the public sports infrastructure available and to provide supervision," he said, adding that he relies on the local authorities to coordinate this in the different municipalities.

Maïthé Chini

The Brussels Times

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