France’s Prime Minister Edouard Philippe has announced that face masks will now be mandatory for certain places. The new measures will come into effect when the country starts easing its lockdown on May 11. The measure involves the use of masks in transport and schools.
The country plans to ease the lockdown that began weeks ago. One of the first moves will be to open schools gradually. Primary schools and kindergartens will be the first to reopen.
On May 11, businesses that are not essential will be allowed to reopen. Markets are among the businesses allowed to reopen. But the measures do not include the reopening of restaurants and bars. The Prime Minister explained that the rules will remain when it comes to going outside. Stores will have the right to ask customers for masks. They should also ensure that customers keep some distance from each other.
Several countries remain on lockdown but some have announced their plans to slowly get back into normality. France has been seriously affected by the deadly virus but residents will have to do less when the plan is introduced. Residents will be able to take the streets and visit stores without having to carry a certificate.
The Prime Minister explained that the lockdown had saved thousands of lives but added that it was time to ease measures to avoid an economic collapse. The proposals by the Prime Minister received the support of the Parliament.
The Prime Minister also made it clear that the lockdown will not be eased on May 11 if new cases don’t stay under 3,000 a day. The country has averaged more than 2,000 cases a day for the last few weeks.
France has the sixth highest number of coronavirus cases around the world. Over 129,000 cases have been confirmed there. More than 23,600 people have lost their lives. France is one of five European countries in the top six. First on the list of most confirmed cases is the US, which recently passed one million.
France and many of the countries with a high number of cases have announced plans to get back into normality. A few days ago, Germany said there would be mandatory rules when it came to wearing masks in certain places.
The announcement from Germany came as the country also confirmed that small shops would be allowed to reopen. The government said at the time that the lockdown would remain in place for businesses until at least May 3. The situation is different from state to state, according to reports. In some areas of Germany, small as well as large shops were allowed to reopen.
In other parts of the world, such as Chile, the use of face masks has also been made mandatory for transport. The measures were introduced a few weeks back and remain in place. Before the measures, the government announced a curfew and later a lockdown for the most affected communes. Some communes have been removed from quarantine but at least part of one returned after a death was reported.
Chile is not the most affected in Latin America but the country has reported an increase of cases and deaths over the last few weeks. Some of the most affected in the region have been Brazil, Ecuador, and Peru.