Corona fine for Ghent students “hanging out together on balcony”

Four students, who are in digs together in Ghent, have been fined by local police.  The four were hanging out on their balcony one evening and were playing a little music, but were not socially distancing.

Ghent police judges that the four were violating corona measures as they were not socially distancing.  The police attended the scene and questioned the students. Each student has now been asked to pay a 250 euro fine.

The students’ parents are indignant.  Gert de Cooman is the father of one of the students: “They were standing on a small balcony around midnight.  There was music playing.  They will have been making some noise.”

“The four students live together in digs.  They eat together, study together, but apparently it’s not allowed because their digs or ‘kot’ isn’t their primary residence.”

Ghent police confirm charge sheets were issued in connection with infringements of corona measures and noise at night.

Father Gert de Cooman doesn’t understand how the fines can help to keep the epidemic at bay.  He feels the police are nit-picking: “It’s a shame.  My daughter hasn’t been coming home since September.  I head to Ghent and we go for a walk together.  They are all very conscientious. An awful lot is taken from them if they can’t even see each other in Ghent.” 

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