President Sebastián Piñera announced this week that the State of Exception would not be extended, meaning the emergency measure will end on Thursday, Sept. 30. For Chile, it means that starting Friday, Oct. 1, the nationwide curfew will be lifted. The proof of vaccination, called the “Mobility Pass,” will play an increasingly important role in reopening the society.
In the first weeks of the pandemic, the Chilean government imposed a nationwide curfew in its fight against the coronavirus. It did so by declaring a State of Exception, an emergency measure that allows the government to impose severe restrictions in case of catastrophe. Now, 18 months later, and with clearly improving virus numbers, President Sebastián Piñera announced the emergency state would not be extended, thus ending the curfew and several other pandemic-related restrictions.
“This State of Catastrophe was necessary to provide our country with greater and better tools to combat the pandemic caused by COVID-19, by restricting the freedom and mobility of people through measures such as quarantines, sanitary cordons, and curfews,” Piñera said.
He added: “It is of vital importance that we are all fully aware that the coronavirus pandemic has not ended and, consequently, we have to continue taking care of our health and our lives, we have to continue adopting rigorous personal care, such as using masks, maintaining social distance, avoiding crowds, and ventilating closed places.”
Quarantines in municipalities will also end. Whether this means Chile’s armed forces will also leave public spaces remains to be seen, but it is increasingly difficult for authorities to justify the presence of the military on Chilean streets, considering the current coronavirus numbers.
As of Nov. 1, the Mobility Pass, a proof of vaccination that can be obtained on the website of the Health Ministry, will be mandatory for all persons over 12 years of age. The pass will be needed to access public spaces, public transportation, restaurants, bars, and events.
Editor-In-Chief Boris van der Spek is the founder of Chile Today. He worked in Colombia, Surinam and the Netherlands as reporter and works with international media during major events, like the social crisis, the elections and the Pope’s visit.