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Message by Governor Kuroiwa(英語)
Message by Governor Kuroiwa
Five weeks have passed since the priority measures for prevention of COVID-19 infection were applied to Kanagawa Prefecture.
Kanagawa Prefectural Government (K.P.G.) captured the sign of infection surge in an early stage and started taking stricter measures, so we have been able to contain rapid expansion that was seen in the so-called third wave. Let me express my deep gratitude to the prefectural citizens and business operators for following our requests during this period.
Though the number of new cases has been showing a decrease tendency, it remains stuck at a high level, exceeding 200 people per day. All indexes to determine the stage of the pandemic indicate the Stage III standard even now.
Furthermore, highly contagious variant strains have become dominant, exceeding 80% of the newly confirmed cases. Once infected with these variants, more people, even young people, can develop severer symptoms and have to be hospitalized for a longer period. We cannot let our guard down in this situation.
Against this background, the national government decided to extend the period of priority measures for infection prevention applied to Kanagawa to June 20 today.
It is painful to me to impose a further burden on the prefectural citizens and business operators, but in order to protect your life from the virus, please accept the following requests.
[To business operators]
- From June 1, three cities of Hiratsuka, Odawara and Hadano are put on the list of areas in need of stricter measures, in addition to the presently designated 17 cities and towns.
- In the 20 cities and towns where the stricter measures are applied, it is requested to accept the following.
- Eating and drinking establishments in these areas are requested to close business by 20:00 and stop serving alcohol and use of karaoke equipment all day.
- Large visitor-attracting facilities with floor space of 1,000 square meters or over are requested to close by 20:00.
- In other municipalities, the following are requested.
- Restaurants are requested to close business by 21:00 and stop use of karaoke equipment all day. With regard to serving alcohol, restrict amount and time according to the respective situation.
- Eating establishments and large facilities that follow the request to shorten business hours are granted financial compensation under a certain condition. K.P.G. will make efforts for prompt payment. We will look into assistance measures for operators of business other than restaurants who are also affected by the suspension of alcohol serving.
- The prefectural government is promoting a program to give certification to eating establishments that encourage customers’ mask wearing so that they can continue their business while taking anti-virus measures. K.P.G. will actively publicize the certified establishments as “restaurants you can visit feeling safe”. We will further improve the incentive measures.
- Many people visit eateries that do not comply with our request in the designated areas. To maintain impartiality with other restaurants that accept the request as well as to prevent further spread of infection, the prefectural government will issue orders based on the Act on Special Measures, etc.
- I ask all the visitor-attracting facilities in the prefecture to continue to limit/control admissions not to cause congestions in and outside of the facilities.
- Implement remote working as much as possible and tell your employees to refrain from dining out in a group and avoid unnecessary outings.
[To prefectural citizens]
- Variants are becoming the dominant infection source. However, there is no special measures against variants. All you need to do is to take basic infection prevention measures of M-A-S-K thoroughly in every aspect of life. Implement M, mask wearing, A, alcoholic disinfection, S, screening using acrylic boards, etc., and K, keep social distancing and ventilating.
- There are cases where people got infected after staying together in one place for a long time even though they were wearing a mask. So, when you meet with someone, have the meeting in a short time in a ventilated place. Never think that your gathering is safe because it is with a small group, in an outdoor space or you are young.
- Refrain from outing or traveling across the prefectural boarders unless it is necessary for living.
- Avoid visiting restaurants not displaying the “List of Prevention Measures against COVID-19 Infection” or operating even after the requested closing time. If you need to dine out, eat in a short time regardless of daytime or nighttime, and wear a mask unless you are actually eating or drinking.
- Do not drink alcohol on the street or in other outdoor spaces. Refrain from having a party inviting members outside of your family.
- In case you have a fever or other symptoms, do not go to work or school, or join club activities.
The prefectural government makes an all-out effort to secure the medical care provision system based on Kanagawa Model. We are working on steady implementation of inoculation programs in cooperation with the municipalities to accelerate vaccination to the prefectural citizens as fast as possible to stop further spread of infection.
I ask for your continued understanding and cooperation for infection prevention in order to put an end to the priority measures on the planned June 20.
May 28, 2021
Governor of Kanagawa Prefecture