Curfews, Christmas parties, vaccines: what could progressive deconfinement look like?

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The confinement is to last at least until December 1. The government spokesperson warns that we are still “far from deconfinement”. How could this deconfinement unfold next month? Elements of answers.

Still a dozen days to go. The second deconfinement must, in principle, end on December 1. This is the date that Emmanuel Macron announced in his speech on October 28. The head of state must address the French again next week.

However, we are still “far from deconfinement” as explained by government spokesman Gabriel Attal, at the end of the Council of Ministers at midday. The equation is complex: how to loosen the noose without running the risk of relaunching the circulation of the virus and being forced to set up a third containment?

If no measure has yet been officially announced, what could be the face of deconfinement? Overview of the hypotheses.

  • A progressive deconfinement

The end of deconfinement will be “gradual” already warns Prime Minister Jean Castex. Asked before the Assembly’s commission of inquiry on Tuesday, he admitted that the government “may have deconfined a little too quickly” last spring. In his speech next week, Emmanuel Macron should not use the word “deconfinement” says the Parisian : it could rather speak of a reduction, if the measure is confirmed.

Should we then expect a return of the curfew in December? To give itself room for maneuver, the government has obtained the extension of the state of health emergency until at least February 16, 2021.

“We will make the announcements as soon as we have stalled the decisions”, explained Jean Castex before the commission of inquiry of the National Assembly.

  • When will the shops reopen?

Shops deemed non-essential, bars and restaurants are closed until further notice. Many businesses were nevertheless able to resume part of their activities, unlike the first confinement, by offering order withdrawals (click and collect).

Will clothing stores, bookstores or toy stores be able to welcome their customers again from December 1 or the following weekend to be able to enjoy Christmas shopping? Nothing indicates it yet.

Bars and restaurants, for their part, which are suspected of being important places of contamination, may have to wait until January or even February 2021 to reopen, according to rumors.

Will we be able to freely spend the Christmas holidays with the family? Festivals synonymous with family gatherings and important intermixing between regions? “I can not promise you that we will all be gathered together anywhere in the country. I sincerely hope so,” said Minister of Health Olivier Véran on Tuesday on BFMTV. In all cases, respect for barrier gestures should stay ahead of us at the table or at the foot of the tree.

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Coronavirus: trees, trips, gatherings … what we know about the organization of Christmas

  • Club sport possible for children

Football, rugby, judo, etc … All children, adolescents and adults who play a sport in a club have had to stop their activities again. The children could resume their activities in December. Emmanuel Macron wants the clubs to reopen in December for children only. If the sanitary conditions allow it, the sport could resume with reinforced protocols. A wish of the Head of State which remains to be confirmed.

The main laboratories that are developing a vaccine against the coronavirus have multiplied the announcements of percentages of effectiveness in recent days. “The authorities are in the starting blocks to be ready to distribute a vaccine”, announced Jean Castex on Tuesday. France could launch vaccination during the first semester of 2021. Who can be vaccinated first: healthcare staff, the elderly? Could this vaccine be made compulsory? All these questions are not officially decided.