Archives, libraries, museums and related art and history exhibition places will open their doors to individual visits
Last update 02.06.2021
At its 1 June meeting, the Government decided* to open the premises of libraries, museums and related art and history exhibition places - museum repositories and expositions, art galleries, cultural centres, memorial sites, archives and other cultural sites - for individual visits. The Ministry of Culture (MoC) has developed and published guidelines for epidemiologically safe operation for the gradual resumption of work on these cultural sites as of 3 June; the doors of the cultural sites will be opened for individual visits as soon as they are ready to comply with the guidelines.
Visitors to libraries, museums and related art and history exhibition places will be allowed only individually - 1 person or persons living in the same household, moreover, a one-way flow of visitors must be ensured. Libraries and archives will also be able to provide services to visitors in reading rooms; libraries with outdoor reading zones will continue providing this service in the fresh air.
Visitors and staff of all these cultural sites must continue to maintain a 2 meters distance, the only exception being people living in the same household.
In the premises of libraries, museums and other cultural sites, 25 square meters of public space must be provided for each visitor, while outside the premises - 10 square meters.
Visitors and staff of libraries, museums and related cultural sites must use a mouth and nose covering; besides, it is determined that staff must provide regular ventilation and disinfection of surfaces, shared technical equipment and surfaces. Books returned by library readers are quarantined in a separate room for 72 hours.
Hand sanitizers should also be placed in places that are easily visible and accessible to visitors.
It is also stipulated that before visiting cultural sites it is recommended to book your visit and purchase tickets remotely if this option is available. The provision of online services and consultations also continues.
The opening of museums, repositories and expositions of museum objects, art galleries, cultural centres, memorial sites and other cultural sites for individual visits is also supported by the Latvian Council of Museums and the Latvian Museum Association, with which the guidelines of the Ministry of Culture for epidemiologically safe operation have been agreed.
It has already been reported that the Ministry of Culture carried out the first pilot project for the epidemiologically safe resumption of museum activities in the premises - from the 21 April 21 to 4 May of this year, the Latvian National Museum of Art opened its doors to epidemiologically safe visits to an exhibition dedicated to the centenary of the Latvian state “Unaccustomed Souls. Symbolism in the Art of the Baltic States”. The pilot project took place safely; the exhibition was visited by 4,040 people in 2 weeks.
For those who have not been vaccinated against Covid-19, the safety measures taken to control the virus are being gradually reduced, in line with what was previously decided by the Government and with a decrease in the incidence rate per 100,000 population. Persons vaccinated/people who have recovered from Covid-19, on the other hand, have a sufficiently low risk of developing Covid-19, so as early as mid-June, as vaccination coverage in the community increases, they are subject to exceptions to the general epidemiological regime: from 15 June onwards they have more opportunities for gathering and attending public events without observing a distance of 2 meters and using a mouth and nose covering.
* - Amendments to Cabinet Regulation No. 360 of 9 June 2020 “Epidemiological Safety Measures for the Containment of the Spread of Covid-19 Infection”