Why Belgium ignored calls to shrink social bubbles
Thursday, 23 July 2020
Long expected changes to Belgium’s current coronavirus fighting measures will continue to allow people to have social circles of up to 15 people, against the advice of experts circulated in previous days.
Despite calls earlier in the day to urgently reduce the size of groups if Belgium wants to stop a second coronavirus wave, the wide changes to measures within the country announced on Thursday by Prime Minister Sophie Wilmès steered clear of the rules on groups.
“If we strictly maintain the bubble of 15 people, we will be able to keep our social bubble, that is so important to us all,” Wilmès said. The decision followed discussions with the evaluation cell of the Federal Crisis Centre, CELEVAL, which suggested a decrease of the social bubble might be advantageous.
“CELEVAL proposed to allow a social circle of 10 people,” Wilmès said. “We thoroughly discussed: why 10? Why do we not stick to 15, when we know that the flare-up has to do with people not respecting the current measures?”