Under the leadership of the government, controls have multiplied in recent weeks.
After words, actions. The government had repeated in recent weeks, by the voice of Jean Castex or that of Gérald Darmanin, that controls would multiply to ensure compliance with the curfew or the closures of certain businesses such as bars and restaurants. Some restaurants, whose addresses are exchanged under the cloak, indeed continue discreetly to make resistance by serving customers selected on the shutter. But the blow is risky: they are already 559 to have received a warning by the national police since January 15, and the recurrence would deprive them of State aid to face the crisis. In addition, more than 1.9 million checks have already been carried out since mid-December for non-compliance with the curfew.
“The French must know that after 6 pm, they have a great chance to be checked and therefore fined”, said the Minister of the Interior Gerald Darmanin on Sunday January 31. Of which act: this same weekend of January 31, the number of checks for non-compliance with the curfew had increased by 39% compared to the previous weekend according to the Ministry of the Interior, and the fines jumped by 53%. As Gérald Darmanin recalled Thursday February 4 at a press conference, 1.9 million French people had already been checked for non-compliance with the curfew since mid-December, for 177,000 fines.
Regarding bars and restaurants, the Ministry of the Interior is advancing a number of 559 illegal establishments detected and warned between January 31 and this weekend of February 6-7. In most cases, the first checks are mainly the occasion of a reminder of the law or an administrative closure of a few days. But the recurrence can lead to a request for reimbursement of aid granted by the State since the start of the crisis. Or even a temporary or definitive abolition of the payment of this aid for future installments. On the side of the Paris police headquarters, we note that 46 illegal restaurants have been fined since January 1. These will suffer from an administrative closure of 15 days, which will prevent them in particular from making take-out sales.
In addition, still in Paris, 400 to 500 businesses, all sectors of activity combined, are checked every day by the police. And since January 1, 127 of them have been closed for two weeks for not respecting the curfew or wearing a mask.
To avoid too many verbalized members, Umih, the main employers’ organization in the restaurant and hotel industry, sent a “memo” to restaurateurs, warning that the number of verbalizations is increasing and “that you have to be irreproachable ”. But among restaurateurs, anger continues to roar. “No one gets used to not working, we justify the Umih. Restaurant owners do not want to lose their expertise, nor that of their staff. In addition, there is nothing worse for a small business owner than having no visibility into the future. ”
Not out of cheerfulness
On the side of the police, these very numerous checks are not carried out either “out of gaiety of heart“, As confirmed by a police source. “We are obliged to ensure that the instructions are respected, but it is always complicated to go and check honest citizens who work in their businesses, continues the same source. We must enforce the sanitary rules, but frankly we have other things to do. This activity does not transcend the police! ”