The infection law, which came into force on Monday, gave regional authorities the power and means to close private facilities as well.
Private gyms and other group exercise venues may have to close their doors completely in the metropolitan area and possibly throughout the province under the new Infectious Diseases Act.
This will happen if the Regional Administrative Authority of Southern Finland (AVI), which makes the decision, listens to the expert opinions of the Helsinki and Uusimaa Hospital District (Hus) and the National Institute for Health and Welfare (THL).
On Monday, Avi has asked THL and Hus for a snapshot of the epidemic and what actions are needed to improve the infection situation. Avi makes its own decisions based on this information.
As well as the CEO of THL Markku Tervahauta that Hus’s chief administrative officer Veli-Matti Ulander tell HS that in the current epidemic situation, all available means must be mobilized.
This means the means provided for in the Communicable Diseases Act, which entered into force on Monday, and in particular Articles 58d and 58g. The former is the so-called second tier and the latter the third tier.
At the third stage, customer premises can be closed. In practice, the lock would strike at certain exercise and leisure facilities such as gyms. They would therefore be categorically closed.
An essential feature of the Infection Act is to give regional actors more powers. Municipalities and squares now have the power and means to close private spaces as well.
“We have expressed that we believe that the introduction of section g (third stage) as soon as possible is essential for the carrying capacity of health care, the protection of life and health, and the prevention of proliferation,” says THL’s Tar Grave.
“Necessity applies to all facilities, but it is especially important to be able to prevent adult contact.”
Ulander, representing the hospital district, is on the same lines.
“The pandemic situation has deteriorated sharply and now all the means available should be used. The health care situation is critical. ”
Sure is that at least Article 58d, the so-called second stage, is introduced for customer premises.
In that case, private and public operators are obliged to act in such a way that close contacts at the customer’s premises can be effectively avoided. If it is not possible to avoid contacts, the entire customer space can be closed by decision of the key or the municipality. The section can only apply to activities involving more than 10 people indoors and more than 50 people in a restricted outdoor space such as a disc tray.
Avi can report the transition to the second tier at any time. HS did not reach an Ai representative on Tuesday to comment on the situation.
“Avi will announce the transition to the second stage today or tomorrow, and a possible transition to the third stage will be discussed on Thursday at a meeting of the Corona Coordination Group,” says the Deputy Mayor of Vantaa’s Social and Health Care Division. Timo Aronkytö.
He will replace the mayor on the coordination group Ritva Viljasta.
Aronkytö himself is of the opinion that the transition to the third stage must take into account the overall assessment, ie the social and cultural effects of the lock, for example.
“If the instructions of the second stage are followed, then there is no need to move to the third stage. The problem is that people do not follow the instructions. ”
Provided moving to the third stage, the doors can be locked in many activities related to exercise and hobby.
For example, facilities for team sports, group sports and contact sports, as well as gyms can be presented for closure. Private public saunas and swimming pools, as well as in-ground swimming pools, spa pools and changing rooms could also be caught.
Dance venues and choral singing facilities would also be closed. The same would apply to amateur theaters, amusement parks, and zoo interiors. Indoor play parks and playgrounds as well as shopping center lounges would also be closed.
Avin it is also possible in its decision to outline whether the introduction of the third stage also applies to recreational facilities for children and young people under the age of 20, which opened on a limited basis in February.
We are now at the lowest step in the classification of the law, where the situation does not really differ from the time before Monday, when the law came into force.
At the lowest level, customer premises, such as shops, hairdressers, gyms and health centers, should have the option of cleaning hands with a hand wash or hand glove. Cleaning and surface cleaning need to be intensified. Customer seats must be placed loosely enough. In addition, there should be clear instructions on, for example, cleaning hands, using masks and keeping safety distances.
Restaurants none of these changes apply, but a separate law is being drafted for possible further restrictions. So if the gyms and group sports venues end up closing, there will be a situation where restaurants and bars are open but the sports venues are closed.
Mayor of Helsinki Jan Vapaavuori announced yesterday that it had brought forward the coordination group to meet on Tuesdays. So far, it has not been reported when the group will announce its decisions. Vapaavuori wrote on Twitter yesterday that “blackmail is certainly known”.
Today, Vapaavuori commented on Twitter that “the means used must be proportionate”.