Dutch municipality hires ‘1.5-metre coach’ to help businesses survive during social distancing

The Dutch municipality of Nunspeet in Gelderland has become the first to hire a 1.5-metre coach. The new role aims to support small businesses and entrepreneurs as they transition to being open in a society with social distancing still in effect. 

The 1.5-metre coach was appointed last week and will help organisations with the practical implementation of the 1.5-metre distance rule. How will a shop be laid out? How can people enter? How can they pay with minimal contact? These are all aspects the coach will be covering.

The municipality of Nunspeet implemented the role after receiving many questions from business owners as to how they can best continue. “The goal is often to find a good balance between the continuation of business operations and ensuring the health of employees, customers and/or visitors,” the municipality said on their website.

However, the municipality says the coach won’t issue fines for non-compliance. The role exists only to advise business owners on strategies they can choose to undertake. The responsibility for guaranteeing the 1.5-metre distance rule lies with the companies and the authorities.

Experts (a.k.a not a certain American president) predict that we may not see a vaccine until next year, and treatments still being investigated. So, it’s likely that the measures taken to create a 1.5-metre society will remain in place for some time.

What do you think of this new role creation? Would you like to see this in your town? Tell us your thoughts in the comments below!

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Samantha Dixon
Sam isn’t great at being Dutch. Originally hailing from Australia, she came to study in the Netherlands without knowing where the country was on a map. She once accidentally ordered the entire ice-cream menu at Smullers. She still can’t jump on the back of a moving bike. But, she remains fascinated by the tiny land of tall people.

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