CHILDREN ACROSS THE SPANISH nation woke this morning to a form of freedom they have not experienced for some 42 days, as some elements of the Coronavirus lockdown are relaxed.
For the first time since the implementation of the public safety measures introduced at midnight on Friday 13th March, children under the age of 14 are permitted to venture outside accompanied by a responsible adult.
The relaxation of public safety measures comes as the country recorded its lowest level of daily mortality for over a month.
The Spanish Government announced the relaxation of quarantine rules for children less than 14 years old this past Tuesday, and on Thursday Vice-President of the Government, Pablo Iglesias, and Minister of Health, Salvador Ilya, announced the conditions for going outside with children.
The new regulations apply only to the 6.3 million Spanish children of 13-years or younger …
- Children accompanied by one adult can leave the home to walk in the streets and visit public places without any other lawful reason, remaining fully compliant at all times with the necessary safety and hygiene measures.
- The adult accompanying a child should live with him or her. This can be one of the parents, a grandparent, a legal guardian, or a brother or sister who is at least 18. If the responsible adult is not related to the child or bears no direct legal responsibility, documentation giving consent will be required from a parent or guardian.
- Outside activity may take place at any time between 09:00 am and 21:00.
- Only one walk per day is allowed.
- The walk must not exceed one hour in duration.
- Children and responsible adults must remain within one kilometre of the family home.
- The walk can take place in a group, with a maximum of three children and always just one responsible adult.
- It is imperative to always maintain a safe distance of two metres between the adult and the child (or children), and any other parent or child.
- Children are permitted to run, ride scooters, or play with a ball, but never with other children or adults outside of their family group.
- If any child is showing even the slightest signs of coronavirus or any other respiratory infection, or if he or she was in contact with a person who has been diagnosed with coronavirus, that child must not leave the home.
- Children are not allowed to visit playgrounds or other children's play areas but may go to public parks or other green spaces if they are located within a radius of one kilometre from the family home.
Lockdown, relaxation of rules and further relief for residents in Spain
The Department of Beaches for Orihuela Town Hall confirmed late last night that the region's beaches would remain closed for reasons of public safety, subject to potential clarification over the forthcoming days.
But in a further positive step, President Pedro Sánchez announced yesterday afternoon that from next Saturday 2nd May “individual physical activity” and “walks with people who live in the same home” will be permitted, provided that the evolution of the pandemic continues in a favourable direction “as it has been so far.”
If approved, the move would allow Spanish residents greater freedom of movement, and a right to exercise and congregate with family, at a very important time given the recent improvements in the springtime weather.
The Council of Ministers are expected to approve a de-escalation plan on Tuesday which will cover the entire month of May, and could be extended into June.
The plan will be based on the report of the experts who advise the Government and on the recommendations of the World Health Organization (WHO), and will indicate a way forward following the expiry of the State of Emergency on 9th May.
Looking for holiday ideas and travel inspiration? Find out more about our favourite recommended things to do on the Orihuela Costa or join the La Zenia community Facebook group and find out what's going on in the local area.
Photo credit: LaZenia.com