Lockdown in France: Citizens Need Govt Form to Justify Why They Are Outside

French police officers patrol and control citizens in Paris on March 17, 2020 while a strick lockdown comes into in effect to stop the spread of the COVID-19 in the country. - French President asked people to stay at home to avoid the spreading the Covid-19, saying only necessary trips …
THOMAS SAMSON/AFP via Getty Images

Citizens in France will be forced to present authorities with a form justifying why they have left their houses, during a nationwide lockdown attempting to curb the spread of coronavirus.

The entire nation of France entered into lockdown on Tuesday, under emergency measures that will be in place for at least the next 15 days. The measures announced by President Emmanuel Macron require people to refrain from going outside for all but essential purposes.

Under the lockdown, citizens will need to fill out a form provided by the government, stating their purpose for leaving their homes.  Acceptable reasons to go outside will include:

  • Going from home to work when working from home is not possible
  • Making essential purchases in authorised local shops
  • Going to a healthcare professional
  • Travelling for childcare or to support vulnerable people
  • Exercise only on an individual basis, around the home and without any gathering

Some 100,000 police officers and members of the Gendarmerie paramilitary force will patrol the streets to enforce the lockdown, handing out fines of €38 to €135 to those who fail to produce correct paperwork while out in public, according to Le Parisien.

“These measures are strong, demanding, but necessary and essential to protect all French men and women, to prevent the spread of the virus and the overload of our health system,” said the minister of the interior Christophe Castaner, who urged people to “stay at home”.

“These are the most restrictive measures in force in Europe today,” Castaner added.

On Tuesday, the death toll for coronavirus reached 148 in France, with a total of 6,600 confirmed being reported. Worldwide, the virus has killed over 7,000 people with more than 180,000 cases recorded across 145 different countries.

In announcing the lockdown, President Macron said: “We are at war… we’re fighting neither another army nor our own nation. But the enemy is here, invisible, untouchable… and is advancing.”

Macron said that the strict measures were necessary as people had ignored the advice of the government to remain inside and for shops to close.

“Even while medics were warning about the gravity of the situation, we saw people get together in the parks, busy markets and restaurants and bars that did not respect the order to close,” Macron said.

In addition to demanding citizens stay inside, the government also announced that it would close its borders on Tuesday, following the lead of Germany which closed its borders on Monday in an attempt to slow the spread of coronavirus.

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