The PTB-PVDA calls for a shutdown of all non-essential sectors
The PTB-PVDA requests that Belgium should close down companies in non-essential sectors. "Let's learn from what is happening in Italy and in the rest of the world," says PTB-PVDA Chairman Peter Mertens.
"As the epidemic begins, the time to take drastic action is now, which is why we have been calling for a week for all production and services activity that is not strictly necessary at this time to be suspended. This is essential to prevent the spread of coronavirus and ensure that as much of the available protective equipment as possible can be directed to sectors which are now vital. If we want to avoid the conditions the Italian people are suffering, we must take this step now."
In Mertens's view, "it is best to take these steps early in the epidemic, not when hospitals are overburdened. Do we really want to take the risk of ending up in a health crisis of major proportions, as in Italy? To avoid this, we have been asking for exactly one week that non-essential production and service operations be shut down in our country as well. Health takes precedence over economic interests."
"The suspension of production and services that are not strictly necessary today is essential to prevent the spread of the coronavirus", said the chairman of the left-wing party. "This is what the Chinese experts who arrived in Italy to deal with the crisis immediately advised. Of course, the income of those who are no longer able to work must be preserved."
"In addition, such a lockdown makes it possible to direct all available protective equipment as much as possible to the areas that need to be kept in operation", continues Peter Mertens. "The caretakers, cashiers, drivers, garbage collectors, postal workers...: the people who keep our country operational today must be able to do so under the safest possible conditions."