Wed, 30 Sep 2020

Following many of France's regional cities where local authorities have implemented specific Covid-19 sanitary restrictions, Paris is set to make face masks compulsory in certain public open-air spaces like parks, street markets and the banks of the river Seine.

Starting from next week, Paris local authorities will make face masks compulsory in certain open-air public areas of the French capital, in a further bid to stem the spread of Covid-19.

Since last month, wearing face masks is already mandatory in closed public spaces in Paris like supermarkets, shops and banks.

In restaurants and cinema halls, masks are compulsory at all times except when seated. In gyms, one is allowed to remove one's mask when exercising.

The colour-coded map below, published on 6 August by the French authorities shows where masks need to be worn. Yellow means masks are compulsory in some designated streets, blue means masks must be worn in all streets, while green means masks must be worn in outdoor street markets.

Parks, markets and the Seine's banks

The additional open-air public areas in Paris where face masks will be made compulsory are expected to include the Seine's river banks, parks, shopping zones and street markets.

Last week, Paris Mayor Anne Hidalgo called on police chief Didier Lallement to implement these measures locally.

Local authorities given power to decide

In the wake of an alarming rise in Covid-19 cases during France's holiday season, the French government gave local authorities the go-ahead last week to implement additional sanitary measures.

Rise of the anti-maskers

Following the announcement, several towns and villages in France have imposed varying levels of restrictions, ranging from compulsory masks on all streets (Mayenne), to masks being required only in town centres and tourist spots (Saint-Malo, Tours, Nice).

Some coastal cities (Biarrtiz, Quiberon), where crowds of tourists were reported not respecting social distancing measures, have also taken specific measures like closing beaches in the evenings.

Orginally published on RFI

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