A society is only as strong as how it cares for the most vulnerable. Watch each other, take care of each other, we'll get through this together. That is the message from our government, but apparently that does not count for the people who have endured war and the terrible journey that followed. We let those people roam the streets. Families with children will have to wait on the street for the next few weeks and perhaps even months.
We already had very few good things to say about the refugee-system here in the Netherlands, but it apparently can be even worse. Refugees entering the country are currently no longer being received. Of course, we understand very well that there are capacity problems everywhere. We understand that there are many things that need to be dealt with acutely during this situation, but this is unacceptable. These people are entitled to protection, safety, and medical care.
It is quite remarkable that the reason given for this measure is that the minister is afraid that these people would take the coronavirus with them into the centers, but apparently it's no problem if these people have to stay outside untested and without any medical help. That happens to be much more dangerous than taking care of these people and, if necessary, temporarily isolating them because of the risk of infection.
Even during this crisis, we must continue to receive people who flee to the Netherlands and provide them with safe shelter. It cannot become the norm now, to let these people sleep outside and leave them to their own devices.