Yesterday the police were just giving people verbal warnings if they were caught walking or driving around without the required attestation. Now they’re starting to fine everyone — €135 — who doesn’t have it. They stopped over 10k people in Paris in the past 12 hours and fined over 500 of them.
So, to clear up any confusion, what they’re saying on the news is this:
- Everyone outside of their homes needs to be carrying a paper attestation (they will not accept photos of it on your smartphone anymore)
- It can be the printout of the official attestation, or a handwritten note in ink with the same information
- You should also have photo ID on you (but that’s actually always the law in France anyway)
The Police are on Your Side
For all of you who think the rules don’t apply to YOU, don’t be a jerk if you get stopped; the police wouldn’t have to do this if everyone stayed inside, and they’re at risk of contamination more than most of us, so be respectful, show your papers, and move along. When they’re not busy keeping people from congregating in public, they’re cracking down on the criminals who are trying to profit from the Coronavirus pandemic: this morning they seized over 15,000 masks being sold on the black market in the 19th arrondissement (along with 240 bottles of fake hand sanitizer gel).
Spread the Message, Not the Coronavirus
The graphic artist Mathieu Persan created a poster in French and English to encourage people to Stay at Home (Restez à la Maison). Interviewed on the Paris news tonight, he encouraged everyone to download, print and share it as they like so that people will think twice before going out (WeShare link): https://we.tl/t-it9h8XgEqv
Bakeries Open Daily, Open-Air Markets May Shut
In France bakeries always had to close for at least one day each week. Now the government has relaxed that law during the crisis to allow them to stay open seven days a week if they want. In other news, supermarkets are controlling the number of people coming inside at any given time, and making sure everyone stays one meter apart while waiting for their turn outside. But open-air markets are a lot harder to manage, and after images of police trying to make the crowds disperse at a market in the 18th arrondissement circulated on the news, rumors have started that the government may close them down.
Applause for Healthcare Workers
A new trend has immediately taken hold all over France (and I’ve also seen posts from Belgium and Switzerland), where at 8pm everyone hangs out their window and applauds for the healthcare workers who are working tirelessly and risking their own health to keep us all alive during this pandemic. Check out #applaudissements, #OnApplaudit, and #MerciAuxSoignants on Twitter or Instagram to see everyone’s videos (like this one).
Stay safe, stay inside! – Heather