Estonia replaces the 2+2 rule with the requirement to disperse

The Estonian government on 18 June decided to replace the 2+2 rule with the requirement for people to disperse, meaning that people must continue to keep a safe distance from others.

“Considering the decrease in the spread of the coronavirus, the government decided today to relax the 2+2 rule requirement; however, it is still very important that people behave responsibly to protect their health and the health of others, keeping their distance and moving about in a dispersed fashion,” the Estonian prime minister, Jüri Ratas, said in a statement.

Dispersion requirements will replace the 2+2 rule in all public spaces, such as stores, service points and public-use spaces at shopping centres, as well as at casinos and slot machine locations. In place of the 2+2 rule, dispersion must also be ensured at public events, public meetings and religious services.

The requirement will apply to public saunas, spas, swimming pools and water parks, as well as bowling, billiards and children’s playrooms. It will apply to activities in basic schools, upper secondary schools, vocational schools and institutes of higher education, training centres, hobby schools, recreational activity providers, and public youth centres. It will also be in place at children’s and student camps, sports fields and museums.

A swimming class at an Estonian school. Photo by Aivo Kallas.

Nightclubs and strip joints to open on 1 July

The government also decided to lift restrictions on driving schools, according to which only the instructor and one student could be in the car at the same time.

As of 1 July, the government also decided to reopen nightclubs, hookah bars and adult entertainment clubs. These entertainment locations may reopen their doors on the condition that operators ensure the appropriate dispersion of customers, a maximum capacity of 50 per cent, a maximum of 100 participants, and disinfection requirements.

This order only concerns the relaxation of the 2+2 rule; all other established requirements regarding the number of participants, maximum occupancy, disinfectants and so on remain valid.

The cover image is illustrative. Photo by Mart Vares.

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