“Covid-19” Phase 2
The gradual easing of Italy's lockdown starts today, May 4, with the reopening of manufacturing activities taking around 4.4 million workers back out of their homes.
It is now possible for everyone to go out to do exercise in Italy's parks, which are reopening, and to visit relatives and "steady" loved ones, and no longer just to do the shopping or for health reasons.
Here is a roundup of which sectors are reopening, which are not and what you can do.
The manufacturing and construction sectors are returning to work, along with wholesale retailers linked to the active sectors. According to labour consultants, 4.4 million people are returning to their workplaces.
Bars and restaurants can reopen, but only for takeaway services and home deliveries.
Retail activities remain suspended apart from those shops already authorised (food, personal hygiene, news agents, pharmacies, tobacconists, bookshops, stores selling clothes for children, those selling flowers and plants, and, very soon, bicycles).
People are also being allowed out to visit relatives and other loved ones, but they will have to wear facemasks and big family gatherings are not permitted. Visits to friends are not allowed.
No travel outside the region
It is only permitted to move in one's region of residence.
People are not allowed to visit their holiday homes, unless it is for necessary maintenance work, although even in this case, the trip must be within one's region of residence.
People away from their home town
Students and workers who were blocked away from their home towns during the lockdown, can now return to their "domicile, home or residence", but they will not be able to then go back to the region that they set off from.
Public transport is one of the key factors for phase two. The regional governments have the job of making sure services operate while social-distancing rules are respected. There are criteria limiting how many people can be inside a vehicle and it is obligatory to wear facemasks and, in some regions, single-use gloves.
Parks and physical exercise
Parks and public gardens are reopening, but children's play areas are not and distances must be respected. Limitation on doing exercise only "in the vicinity of one's home" has been removed. So it is possible to move, including via car, to reach the area where one wants to go jogging or do exercise.
Training is permitted behind closed doors for individual sports for athletes (professional and non) declared of national interest by Italian Olympic Committee CONI. The interior ministry has said that individual training "in public and private spaces" is also allowed for team-sport athletes.
Universities can hold exams and sessions for the presentation of degree theses, while respecting social-distancing. Laboratories can operate too as well as placement programmes.
Funerals and cemeteries
Funerals are permitted but a maximum of 15 people can attend and facemasks must be worn. It is also possible to visit cemeteries but Masses remain banned for the moment.