In our Newsflash of 22 February, following the adoption of the law of 11 February 2022, we reported on the relaxation of the health restrictions imposed by the law of 17 July 2020 introducing a series of measures to combat the COVID-19 pandemic (in particular, that the CovidCheck regime in the workplace had been made optional and that curfews had been abolished).
Due to the improvement in the main indicators and the epidemiological situation, the Luxembourg government has now relaxed restrictions once again, with the law of 11 March 2022 (the "Law").
The main changes introduced by the Law are summarised below, and largely cover the abolition of the CovidCheck regime and the loosening of the obligation to wear a mask.
- The CovidCheck regime has been abolished in the workplace except for care facilities (hospitals, retirement homes, etc.) and their staff, due to the high concentration of people vulnerable to COVID-19. Please note that in line with this, the prohibition on terminating the employment contract or imposing disciplinary sanctions for employees who refuse to show a valid certificate under the CovidCheck regime has also been abolished.
- The CovidCheck regime has been abolished in restaurants, bars, cafés and canteens, both for the staff at these establishments and for their customers.
- In addition, the CovidCheck regime has been abolished for establishments open to the public and for gatherings, protests and events. In principle, all members of the population can be permitted entry irrespective of their state of health or vaccination status.
- The CovidCheck regime for use in care
facilities remains in place, but has been relaxed from 3G+
to 3G. Lawmakers are of the view that "the
fact that these establishments house a large number of particularly
vulnerable people justifies selectively keeping in place more
restrictive measures than for the general population" (bill
no. 7971, 7-8). Under the Law, people with disabilities are no
longer considered particularly vulnerable. Thus, sectors affecting
this category of the population are no longer subject to specific
Access to care facilities is now limited to those who can show that:
- they became fully vaccinated less than 270 days ago or have received a booster shot, or
- they have a negative PCR test less than 48 hours old or certified COVID-19 test less than 24 hours old, or
- they have a certificate of recovery from less than 180 days prior.
In these care facilities, it is no longer necessary for vaccinated or recovered persons to do a self-test on site. However, unvaccinated persons without a certificate of recovery and/or with a certificate attesting to the fact that they should not be vaccinated must still show a negative PCR or certified test less than 24 hours old. Alternatively, they can do a self-test on site.
In view of the vulnerability of those who typically occupy care facilities, the requirement for staff, visitors and external providers to wear a mask has been maintained.
- The public health restrictions on gatherings have been
repealed (obligation to wear a mask, obligation to notify
and/or obtain authorisation from the Health Directorate, etc.). As
a result, masking at schools has been abolished.
However, masks must still be worn on public transport and in care facilities.
As a reminder, failure to wear a mask on public transport and failure to comply with an isolation measure are punishable by a criminal fine of between EUR 500 and EUR 1,000. A warning fine (avertissement taxé) of EUR 300 may be imposed for these offences by police officers and agents of the Grand Ducal Police, and by agents of the Customs and Excise Agency.
- The requirement for a health protocol in shopping centres has been replaced by general recommendations for protective and hygiene measures, including recommendations to wear a mask in crowded areas, to practice social distancing and to wash and disinfect hands.
- The health measures for sports, fitness, school and cultural activities have been repealed and replaced by general recommendations on the hygiene and protective measures to apply, including recommendations to wear a mask in crowded areas, to practice social distancing and to wash and disinfect hands.
The Law came into force on 11 March 2022 , the date of its publication, and is set to remain in force until after 30 June 2022.
The content of this article is intended to provide a general guide to the subject matter. Specialist advice should be sought about your specific circumstances.