While it is logical that new measures are on the agenda, they will be a "very cold shower" for those who thought being vaccinated would lead to more freedom, N-VA chairperson and Antwerp mayor Bart De Wever said ahead of Wednesday's Consultative Committee meeting.
"Hopefully we will be over the peak soon. People are predicting the end of November and I hope that's true," De Wever said on Wednesday, Belga News Agency reports. "It's only logical that we need to take measures to contain the virus circulation in the meantime. The only thing that bothers me is the fact that everyone finds it necessary to demand or reject their own measures in advance, which means that no one gets it in the end."
The Consultative Committee started meeting at 2:30 PM today, and will hold a press conference to announce its decisions, a spokesperson for Prime Minister Alexander De Croo confirmed to The Brussels Times. De Wever says he hopes the committee to make a decision with minimal impact on the economy.
"We have to find the best possible way of dealing with the virus, with measures that are bearable and not an acute yo-yo policy that will hurt the economy badly," he explained.
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While they are needed, any new measures will also be a "very cold shower" for vaccinated people who thought the vaccine would mean freedom, De Wever warned.
"The message was: get vaccinated and then you will reach the realm of freedom," he states. "The experts said that too and I don't blame them now, that is progressive insight. But Flanders was on the appeal en masse and now the infectiousness among vaccinated people turns out to be higher and the hospitalisation of even vaccinated people over 65 is much higher than we had ever thought and then the pressure on the care system becomes too heavy again. Nobody was prepared for that. We are now heading for another Christmas and New Year with constrictions on social life, which is rock hard."
De Wever also called for the urgent rollout of the third or "booster shot," urging those questioning if they need it to look at the evidence. "You are less infectious, you have less chance of hospitalisation and there is a huge reduction in mortality during this wave. You can't ignore that."