For the first time, an end to the battle against the coronavirus is beginning to be seen. The declarations of Pedro Sanchez in the appearance of this Tuesday after the meeting of the Council of Ministers have been hopeful for the population. At least two good news are glimpsed . First of all, the official forecast is that by the end of August, 70% of Spaniards should already be vaccinated against Covid-19 thanks to the arrival of new vaccines and the acceleration of the vaccination rate.
Secondly, the Government hopes not to have to extend the state of alarm beyond May 9, the date on which the six-month extension decreed last November ends.

But what does the end of the state of alarm imply
The current state of alarm mainly regulates three measures that limit fundamental rights: curfew, perimeter closures and meetings.
The only one that would be unsustainable without the legal coverage offered by the state of alarm is the curfew, so once the six-month extension is completed on May 9, there will be no more night confinement.

What happens with the mobility restrictions

Until now, the Government relies on the state of alarm and on a reference standard; the organic law 3/1986, of Special Measures in the Matter of Public Health, which allows health authorities to adopt the measures deemed necessary to control communicable diseases. However, once the state of alarm ends, there will be a decentralization in which the autonomous communities will once again individually control the measures they implement in their territory, as happened between June and October last year.
This means that at first, perimeter lockdowns and mobility restrictions are ended. This measure will no longer be common to all of Spain, but then the 1986 law comes into debate, which has generated disparate opinions among jurists in recent months.
In its article 3 this rule establishes that to control communicable diseases, the health authority may adopt the appropriate measures to control the sick , and among them the limitation of mobility could be included. However, this is a decision that each Autonomous Community must assess with the intention of decreeing perimeter closures of health zones, neighborhoods or cities. In addition, ultimately this decision requires a judicial endorsement , so the judges will have the responsibility to decide whether to endorse or revoke them.
The 1986 law has a limited legal scope to limit essential rights, so it would remain under the decision of the courtsand it is a more complex procedure, having to be studied according to the risk conditions in which the community finds itself.
However, for home confinements such as the one in March of last year, it is unfeasible to decree them without a state of alarm that protects it.

What about social gatherings and capacity in bars

Another of the restrictions that have accompanied us in the battle against the coronavirus is the limit of people for social gatherings.This will happen, like the perimeter confinements, at the hands of the autonomous communities, which will be able – with judicial permission – to restrict the maximum number of people in social gatherings, both indoors and outdoors.
Regarding the closure of the interior of bars, the limitation of hours in stores or hotels or the suspension of all non-essential activities, these are security measures that do not imply the restriction of fundamental rights, so they do not require the coverage of the state of alarm or judicial authorization.
The communities have the power, therefore, to impose these measures without waiting for the permission of the judges , although any of them can be appealed in court.
In short, at least from the Government the measures are beginning to loosenof security against the virus, and the decision to establish more or fewer restrictions depending on how the spread of the virus evolves and the pace of vaccination will be left to the autonomous communities and their risk situation. In any case, there is no doubt that we are getting closer to seeing the end of the pandemic, or at least a situation of control of it. With caution and always following the safety recommendations, we can breathe easier at the good news.

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