Restrictions on gatherings tightened in Uusimaa

Regional authorities have announced a ban on indoor public events and gatherings of more than 20 people that do not require Covid passports beginning Saturday 4 December.

Numbers at public events in the Uusimaa region will not be restricted if organisers require a valid Covid passport. Image: Silja Viitala / Yle

The Regional State Administrative Agency of Southern Finland has announced that starting Saturday indoor, organised public events and other gatherings of more than 20 people will be banned in the Uusimaa region which includes the capital, Helsinki.

Events drawing more than 20 people can be held, if organisers ensure than all participants have a valid Covid passport.

Also under the decision, operators responsible for commercial and public premises are required to organise the use of their premises in such a way that the risk of coronavirus infection can be prevented. For example, the number of customers may be limited, visitor participation staggered, or other arrangements made related to the use of indoor spaces and seating.

Regardless of the number of individuals, the decision applies to facilities used for sports, exercise, leisure and recreational activities, such as gyms, indoor sports facilities and public saunas. For other premises, the decision must be complied with in the case of any indoor space used for gatherings of more than 10 persons or outdoor areas for more than 50 persons.

Covid passport alternative

Event organisers can avoid implementing these restrictions if they ask all attendees to show a valid Covid passport. In that case there is no need to restrict the number of participants. The Covid passport must be checked upon arrival at the venue of the event. The requirement applies to all persons over 16 years of age.

Other open gatherings, not classed as organised public events, must comply with restrictions. An example of this kind of gathering is a demonstration that can be attended by anyone, not only invited guests or ticket holders.

The Ministry of Social Affairs and Health sent new guidelines to regional government agencies on Wednesday, recommending the introduction of more restrictive measures to moderately risky activities in areas where infection rates have risen.

These latest restrictions in the Uusimaa region will remain in force until 31 December.