Curfew back in Catalonia

by Lorraine Williamson
Bar closing for Catalonia curfew

CATALONIA – After the approval of the highest court, a curfew is now in effect in the Catalonia region. Therefore, in the most populous municipalities with the highest infection rates, residents are not allowed outside from 1.00 – 6.00 am. 

The Public Prosecution Service had previously opposed this freedom-restricting measure. But the highest court of Catalonia ruled that the introduction of the curfew is an appropriate decision. Moreover, the Catalan regional government wants to use this to prevent hospital crisis situations due to the highly contagious omicron variant. The court also considers the measure necessary in view of the upcoming holidays and the feast of the Three Kings in January. 

No one on the street after 1.00 am on New Year’s Eve 

In addition to the curfew, a number of other measures have also been introduced. Only 70% of the visitor capacity is allowed in all sectors of public life (50% in interior areas of bars, restaurants) and nightlife is completely locked. The new measures will remain in force for at least two weeks. Therefore, everyone must also stay indoors from 1.00 am during the New Year. 

Corona pass remains mandatory in catering 

The judge also approved a maximum group size of 10 people at social gatherings. Showing the corona pass in bars and restaurants remains mandatory. The regional government has also urged municipalities to impose restrictions on access to all public closed spaces, parks, and beaches so that large groups can no longer gather here. 

Exception for Puigcedà and Salt 

The curfew applies in the 116 municipalities with more than 10 thousand inhabitants and in municipalities where the incidence is higher than 250 positive tests per 100 thousand inhabitants. This means that at least 6.3 million people must comply with the new measure, which is 82% of the Catalan population. A curfew also applies to a number of municipalities that are located around these larger cities. These are Palafolls, Santa Susana, Sant Jaume d’Enveja, La Canonja, Lliçà de Vall, Polinyà, Sentmenat, Montmeló and El Papiol. There are two municipalities with more than 10,000 inhabitants where the curfew does not apply due to a lower incidence. These are Puigcedà and Salt. 

The curfew does not apply to medical emergencies and people who work night shifts. Dogs may only be let out during the curfew between 4.00 – 6.00 am. 

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