16 March 2020 – Spain is currently in a State of Emergency

Spain is currently in a country-wide period of lock down which began on Saturday 14 March and will last for a period of at least 15 days.

During this period people are permitted to be out only to travel to a supermarket/pharmacy/hospital, travel to work, take out rubbish and take the dog for a short walk. When people do go out, the expectation is to respect the protocols about social distancing and to be out for only the minimum necessary period of time.

Air Travel

Return travel to the UK appears to be extremely uncertain, not just the inability to reach a departure airport, but the imminent significant reduction of capacity by all the major airlines flying between Spain and the UK. Giving someone a lift to an airport, no matter how short a distance, is not a just reason for being outside.

Workers

Office staff are being told to work from home. Outside workers may continue only if their work does not put them in direct contact with others. Supermarkets, pharmacies and hairdressers remain open.

Enforcement

There is anecdotal reporting of a greater police presence. Officers are enforcing the state of emergency. Fines are being issued to people unable to provide a satisfactory reason for being out.

Strength of Human Spirit

At 20:00 daily there is a public display of support for everyone working in hospitals, medical centres and all other emergency services. The outbreak of applause is uplifting and keeps the spirits high as well conveying appreciation for people who are putting themselves in the front time of dealing with Coronavirus. A word also for taxi drivers who are reported to be taking people between their home and hospital.

This is a period of time very few of us will have experienced before. We must heed the advice that is coming from the government and health experts – and know that while challenging now, this is something we will get through.

Sun Lawyers. 16 March 2020


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