6 November: The City Government will close Oslo’s social arenas

Press release: Today, Oslo’s City Government has approved closure of social arenas. «The infection levels in Europe have been very serious during recent weeks, and Norway is now at the start of the second wave of Covid-19. We have a last chance to stop the pandemic with very strict measures, which the City Government has approved today», said Governing Mayor Raymond Johansen (Labour).

The measures will take effect from Monday 9th November at 24.00 hrs (midnight), the night before Tuesday 10th November 2020.

These are the measures in Oslo:

  • A ban on all indoor events. It will still be possible to hold funerals and burials.
  • A ban on organised recreational sports for adults. This will also apply for indoor leisure activities such as brass bands and choirs. Professional sports can be held without spectators indoors and with spectators outdoors
  • All institutions for culture and leisure activities will be closed, apart from libraries
  • A ban on serving alcohol in Oslo. Bars and restaurants can stay open without serving alcohol.
  • Red risk level, with stronger anti-infection measures and smaller groups at high schools and adult education centres, and red risk level will be considered for secondary school during the next weeks.
  • Children and youth can continue with organised sports, but will not be allowed to take part in competions or to play outside Oslo
  • Compulsory face masks in taxis, in the same way as in the rest of public transport
  • Shops, shopping centres and other commercial spaces must ensure that customers can keep two metres apart, as well as provide adequate cover by security guards.

These measures will apply from Monday 9th November at 24.00hrs (midnight) and will last as long as necessary, depending on how the pandemic develops. All other earlier regulations will also be continued.

The only indoor social activity that will be allowed in Oslo will be to meet in private homes. Up to ten people can be together in private homes, provided that the infection prevention regulations are upheld. Weddings, confirmations and other family gatherings with more than ten people are banned in the period ahead.

Increased capacity for testing and tracing

The City of Oslo has had good capacity for testing and good systems for tracing infections during the Autumn. To make sure there is still enough capacity and to keep waiting times short, the City Government will mobilise additional resources in the period ahead.

«We will use our power to direct and call up staff from other sectors and departments, to help fight the Corona virus. Most important now, is that we can protect our vulnerable residents and avoid overburdening the health services», Vice Mayor for Health, Robert Steen (Labour) said.

Shielding children and youth from strong measures

High schools and adult education are now placed at the red risk level.

Kindergartens and primary schools will carry on at the yellow risk level. So far, there is little to suggest that these services play a big part in spreading infections and there is still not much corona infection amongst younger children. Nonetheless, the city districts (bydelene) have been instructed to reduce opening hours for kindergartens when this is necessary to uphold the infection prevention measures.

Secondary schools have been requested to prepare and makes plans to move onto the red risk level. The need for this will be reviewed during the next two weeks, as recommended by the national government.

«We are taking these drastic measures just now, to reduce the levels of infection and to relieve the burden of tracing, but also to avoid closing kindergartens, schools and free-time activities for children. We will also keep the libraries open. It is important that children and youth can keep some of their arenas when so much else is closed down», said the Vice Mayor for Education, Inga Marte Thorkildsen (Social Left).

Health stations and childcare services will try as far as possible to keep working normally, and will prioritise meeting physically with children.

Press contact

media@byr.oslo.kommune.no / +47 99 28 90 90 (not SMS)

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