SPAIN IN STATE OF ALARM AMIDST CORONAVIRUS PANDEMIC: WHAT IS DETAILED IN THE ROYAL DECREE
You might have noticed that the “State of Alarm” royal decree is not available in English. Not to worry, though, because we just finished the translation.
Here is the translated text:
Article 1. Declaration of the State of Alarm.
Under the provision of article four, sections b) and d), the Organic Law
4/1981, of June 1, of the States of Alarm, exception and site, declares the State of Alarm in order to face the health emergency situation caused by the coronavirus COVID-19.
Article 2. Territorial scope.
The declaration of the State of Alarm affects the entire national territory.
Article 3. Duration.
The duration of the State of Alarm declared by this royal decree is for fifteen calendar days.
Article 4. Competent authority.
1. For the purposes of the State of Alarm, the competent authority will be the Government.
2. For the exercise of the functions referred to in this royal decree,
under the superior direction of the Spanish President, there will be competent authority delegates, in their respective areas of responsibility:
a) The Minister of Defense.
b) The Minister of the Interior.
c) The Minister of Transport, Mobility and Urban Agenda.
d) The Minister of Health.
Likewise, in areas of responsibility that do not fall within the competence of one of the Ministers indicated in paragraphs a), b) or c), the Minister of Health shall be the delegated competent authority.
3. The Ministers designated as competent authorities delegates in this royal decree are empowered to issue orders, resolutions, provisions and interpretive instructions that, in the specific sphere of their performance, are necessary to guarantee the provision of all services, ordinary or extraordinary, in order to protect people, property and places by adopting any of the measures provided for in article eleven of Organic Law 4/1981, of June 1.
The acts, provisions and measures referred to in the preceding paragraph may be adopted ex officio or at the motivated request of the competent regional and local authorities, in accordance with the applicable legislation in each case and must pay attention to vulnerable people. For this, the administrative procedure will not be necessary.
4. During the validity of the State of Alarm, the Situation Committee provided for in the first additional provision of Law 36/2015, of September 28, on National Security, is activated as a support body for the Government in its capacity as competent authority.
Article 5. Collaboration with the delegated competent authorities.
1. The members of the State Security Forces and Bodies, the Police Bodies of the autonomous communities and the local corporations will be under the direct orders of the Minister of the Interior, for the purposes of this royal decree, as necessary for the protection people, goods and places, being able to impose extraordinary services for their duration or their nature.
2. The authority agents will be able to practice checks on the people, goods, vehicles, premises and establishments that are necessary to verify and, where appropriate, prevent from taking place the suspended services and activities in this royal decree, except those expressly excepted. To do this, they may issue the necessary orders and prohibitions and suspend the activities or services that are being carried out.
To this end, citizens have the duty to collaborate and not hinder the work of the authority agents in the exercise of their functions.
3. In those autonomous communities that have their own police forces, the Monitoring and Coordination Commissions established in the respective Security Boards will establish the necessary mechanisms to ensure what is stated in the two previous sections.
4. The intervention services and assistance in emergencies of civil protection defined in article 17 of Law 17/2015, of July 9, of the National Civil Protection System, will act under the functional dependency of the Minister of the Interior.
5. The Minister of the Interior may issue the orders, resolutions, provisions and instructions that he considers necessary to all the subjects included in the scope of application of Law 5/2014, of April 4, on Private Security.
6. For the effective compliance of the measures included in this royal decree, the competent delegated authorities may require the action of the Armed Forces, in accordance with the provisions of article 15.3 of Organic Law 5/2005, of November 17, National Defense.
Article 6. Ordinary management of services.
Each Administration will retain the powers granted by current legislation in the ordinary management of its services to adopt the measures it deems necessary within the framework of direct orders from the competent authority for the purposes of the State of Alarm and without prejudice to the provisions of articles 4 and 5.
Article 7. Limitation of the freedom of movement of people.
1. During the validity of the State of Alarm, people may only circulate along the roads for public use to carry out the following activities:
a) Acquisition of food, pharmaceuticals and basic necessities.
b) Assistance at health centers, services and establishments.
c) Commuting to the workplace to carry out your work, professional or business provision.
d) Returning to the habitual place of residence.
e) Assistance and care for the elderly, minors, dependents, people with disabilities or especially vulnerable people.
f) Commuting to financial and insurance entities.
g) Due to force majeure or necessity.
h) Any other activity of a similar nature that must be done individually, unless accompanied by people with disabilities or for other justified cause.
2. Likewise, the circulation of private vehicles on public roads will be allowed to carry out the activities referred to in the previous section or to refuel at gas stations or service stations.
3. In any case, any movement must respect the recommendations and obligations issued by the health authorities.
4. The Minister of the Interior may decide to close the circulation on roads or sections of them for reasons of public health, traffic safety or fluidity or restrict access to certain vehicles for the same reasons.
When the measures referred to in the preceding paragraphs are adopted ex officio, the autonomous administrations that exercise enforcement powers of State legislation on traffic, vehicle circulation and road safety will be previously informed.
The state, regional and local authorities competent in matters of traffic, vehicle circulation and road safety will guarantee the dissemination among the population of the measures that may affect road traffic.
Article 8. Temporary requirements and compulsory personal benefits.
1. In accordance with the provisions of article eleven b) of Organic Law 4/1981, of June 1, the competent delegated authorities may agree, ex officio or at the request of the autonomous communities or local entities, that temporary searches be carried out of all kinds of goods necessary for the fulfillment of the purposes set forth in this royal decree, in particular for the provision of security services or critical and essential operators. When the requisition is agreed ex officio, the corresponding regional or local Administration will be previously informed.
2. In the same terms, the realization of essential mandatory personal benefits for the achievement of the purposes of this royal decree may be imposed.
Article 9. Containment measures in the educational and training field.
1. Face-to-face educational activity is suspended in all centers and stages, cycles, degrees, courses and levels of education contemplated in article 3 of Organic Law 2/2006, of May 3, on Education, including university education, as well as any other educational or training activities taught in other public or private centers.
2. During the suspension period, educational activities will be maintained through distance and online modalities, whenever possible.
Article 10. Containment measures in the field of commercial activity, cultural facilities, recreational establishments and activities, hotel and restaurant activities, and other additional activities.
1. The opening to the public of retail stores and establishments is suspended, with the exception of commercial retail establishments of food, beverages, products and basic necessities, pharmaceutical, medical, and optical establishments and orthopedic products, hygienic products, hairdressers, newspapers and stationery, automotive fuel, tobacconists, technological equipment and telecommunications, pet food, commerce for internet, telephone or correspondence, dry cleaners and laundromats. Any other activity or establishment that in the opinion of the competent authority may pose a risk of contagion is suspended.
2. The permanence in commercial establishments whose opening is allowed must be strictly necessary so that consumers can purchase food and basic necessities, the possibility of consuming products in the establishments themselves being suspended.
In any case, crowds will be avoided and consumers and employees will be controlled to maintain the safety distance of at least one meter in order to avoid possible contagion.
3. The opening to the public of museums, archives, libraries, monuments, as well as of the premises and establishments offering public shows, sports or leisure activities indicated in the annex to this royal decree are suspended.
4. Hospitality and restaurant activities are suspended, and may be provided exclusively via home delivery services.
5. The festivals, parades and popular festivals are also suspended.
Article 11. Containment measures in relation to places of worship and civil and religious ceremonies.
Attendance at places of worship and civil and religious ceremonies, including funerals, are conditional on the adoption of organizational measures consisting of avoiding crowds of people, depending on the dimensions and characteristics of the places, in such a way as to guarantee attendees the possibility of respecting the distance between them of at least one meter.
Article 12. Measures aimed at strengthening the National Health System throughout the national territory.
1. All the civil sanitary authorities of the public administrations of the national territory, as well as the other officials and workers at their service, will be under the direct orders of the Minister of Health as necessary for the protection of people, property and places, being able to impose extraordinary services on them for their duration or their nature.
2. Notwithstanding the foregoing, the regional and local public administrations will maintain the management, within their sphere of competence, of the corresponding health services, ensuring their proper functioning at all times. The Minister of Health reserves the exercise of all the powers that are necessary to guarantee cohesion and equity in the provision of said service.
3. In particular, the full disposition of the civil authorities responsible for the field of public health, and of the employees who provide services in it, will be ensured.
4. These measures will also guarantee the possibility of determining the best distribution in the territory of all technical and personal resources, in accordance with the needs that are revealed in the management of this health crisis.
5. The competent delegated authorities shall exercise their powers to ensure that personnel and military health centers and establishments contribute to strengthening the National Health System throughout the national territory.
6. Likewise, the Minister of Health may exercise those powers that are necessary for these purposes with respect to privately owned health centers, services and establishments.
Article 13. Measures to ensure the supply of goods and services necessary for the protection of public health.
The Minister of Health may:
a) Issue the necessary orders to ensure the supply of the market and the operation of the services of the production centers affected by the shortage of products necessary for the protection of public health.
b) Intervene and temporarily occupy industries, factories, workshops, farms or premises of any nature, including privately owned health centers, services and establishments, as well as those that carry out their activity in the pharmaceutical sector.
c) Practice temporary searches of all types of property and impose mandatory personal benefits in those cases where it is necessary for the adequate protection of public health, in the context of this health crisis.
Article 14. Transport measures.
1. In relation to all means of transport, whatever the competent Administration may be, the following will apply:
a) The Minister of Transport, Mobility and Urban Agenda is empowered to dictate the acts and provisions that, in the specific sphere of his action, are necessary to establish conditions for the mobility services, ordinary or extraordinary, in order to protect people, goods and places.
b) The acts, provisions and measures referred to in paragraph a) above may be adopted ex officio or at the motivated request of the competent regional and local authorities, in accordance with the applicable legislation in each case. This will not require the processing of any administrative procedure.
2. Likewise, the following measures applicable to internal transport are adopted:
a) For public road, rail, air and sea passenger transport services that are not subject to a public contract or public service obligation (PSO), transport operators will reduce the total supply of operations by at least 50%. By resolution of the Minister of Transport, Mobility and Urban Agenda, this percentage may be modified and specific conditions may be established.
b) State-owned public passenger services for road, rail, air, and sea transportation that are subject to a public contract or PSO will reduce their total offer of operations by at least the following percentages:
i. Medium- distance railway services: 50%.
ii. Medium-distance railway services-AVANT: 50%.
iii. Regular passenger transport services by road: 50%.
iv. Air transport services subject to PSO: 50%.
v. Maritime transport services subject to a navigation contract: 50%.
Commuter rail services will maintain their range of services.
By resolution of the Minister of Transport, Mobility and Urban Agenda, the reduction percentages of the services referred to above may be modified and specific conditions may be established in this regard. This resolution will take into account the need to ensure that citizens can access their jobs and basic services if necessary.
c) The services of public passenger transport by road, rail and maritime of autonomous or local competence that are subject to a public contract or PSO, or are publicly owned, will maintain their offer of transport.
The Minister of Transport, Mobility and Urban Agenda and the regional and local authorities with powers in the field of transport may establish a percentage reduction in services in case the health situation so advises, as well as other specific conditions for the provision of the same.
In adopting these measures, the need to ensure that citizens can access their jobs and basic services if necessary is taken into account.
d) Notwithstanding the provisions of paragraphs a), b) and c), specific criteria shall be established for transportation between the Peninsula and non-peninsular territories, as well as for transportation between islands.
e) In relation to all means of transport, operators of passenger transport services are obliged to carry out daily cleaning of transport vehicles, in accordance with the recommendations established by the Ministry of Health.
f) Online ticket sales systems must include a sufficiently visible message during the ticket sale process in which travel is discouraged except for reasons that cannot be postponed. By order of the Minister of Transport, Mobility and Urban Agenda, the characteristics and content of this announcement may be established.
g) In those services in which the ticket grants a seat or cabin, transport operators will take the necessary measures to ensure the maximum possible separation between passengers.
3. Transport operators will carry out the necessary adjustments to comply with the percentages established in this article as homogeneously as possible among the different services they provide and may ask the Ministry of Transport, Mobility and the Urban Agenda for any questions that require interpretation or clarification.
If, for technical or operational reasons, the direct application of the percentages established from the first day is not feasible, the services should be adjusted as quickly as possible, which may not last more than five days.
4. By resolution of the Minister of Transport, Mobility and Urban Agenda, the necessary conditions will be established to facilitate the transport of goods throughout the national territory, in order to guarantee supply.
5. The delegated competent authorities may adopt all those additional measures necessary to limit the circulation of collective means of transport that may be necessary and proportionate to preserve public health.
Article 15. Measures to guarantee food supply.
1. The delegated competent authorities shall take the necessary measures to ensure:
a) The food supply in the places of consumption and the operation of the services of the production centers, allowing the distribution of food from the origin all the way to the commercial establishments for sale to the consumer, including warehouses, logistics centers and destination markets. In particular, when it is necessary for security reasons, the accompaniment of the vehicles that carry the mentioned goods may be agreed.
b) When necessary, the establishment of sanitary corridors to allow the entry and exit of people, raw materials and processed products destined for or coming from establishments where food is produced, including farms, markets, animal feed factories and slaughterhouses.
2. Likewise, the competent authorities may agree on the intervention of companies or services, as well as the mobilization of the State Security Forces and Bodies and the Armed Forces in order to ensure the proper functioning of the provisions of this article.
Article 16. Customs transit.
The delegated competent authorities shall adopt the necessary measures to guarantee customs transit at the points of entry or border inspection points located in ports or airports. In this regard, essential products will be treated as a priority.
Article 17. Guarantee of supply of electrical energy, products derived from petroleum and natural gas.
The delegated competent authorities may adopt the necessary measures to guarantee the supply of electricity, petroleum products, and natural gas, in accordance with the provisions of article 7 of Law 24/2013, of December 26, of the Electricity Sector, and in articles 49 and 101 of Law 34/1998, of October 7, of the hydrocarbon sector.
Article 18. Critical operators of essential services.
1. The critical operators of essential services provided for in Law 8/2011, of April 28, which establishes measures for the protection of critical infrastructures, will adopt the necessary measures to ensure the provision of essential services that are their own.
2. Said requirement will also be adopted by those companies and suppliers that, without being considered critical, are essential to ensure the supply of the population and the essential services themselves.
Article 19. Publicly and privately owned media.
The public and private-owned social media are obliged to insert messages, announcements and communications that the competent delegated authorities, as well as the regional and local administrations, deem necessary to issue.
Article 20. Penalty regime.
Failure to comply or resistance to the orders of the competent authorities in the State of Alarm will be punished in accordance with the laws, in the terms established in article ten of Organic Law 4/1981, of June 1.
First additional provision. Foreign accredited personnel as a member of diplomatic missions.
Foreign accredited personnel as a member of diplomatic missions, consular offices and international organizations located in Spain are exempt from the limitations on freedom of movement, both for travel within the national territory, to their country of origin or to third States, in that it is equally accredited, provided that these are movements linked to the performance of official functions.
Second additional provision. Suspension of procedural deadlines.
1. Terms are suspended and the periods provided for in the procedural laws for all jurisdictional orders are suspended and interrupted. The calculation of the terms will be resumed at the moment when the present royal decree or, where appropriate, its extensions, loses its validity.
2. In the criminal jurisdictional order, suspension and interruption will not apply to habeas corpus procedures, to the actions entrusted to the guard services, to actions with detainees, to protection orders, to urgent actions in the field of prison surveillance nor to any precautionary measure regarding violence against women or minors.
Likewise, in the investigation phase, the competent judge or court may decide to carry out those actions that, due to their urgent nature, cannot be postponed.
3. In relation to the rest of the jurisdictional orders, the interruption referred to in the first section shall not apply to the following cases:
a) The procedure for the protection of the fundamental rights of the person provided for in articles 114 and following of Law 29/1998, of July 13, regulating the Contentious-Administrative Jurisdiction, or the processing of the planned judicial authorizations or ratifications in article 8.6 of the aforementioned law.
b) The procedures of collective conflict and for the protection of fundamental rights and public liberties regulated in Law 36/2011, of October 10, regulating social jurisdiction.
c) The judicial authorization for non-voluntary internment due to mental disorder provided for in article 763 of Law 1/2000, of January 7, on Civil Procedure.
d) The adoption of measures or provisions for the protection of minors provided for in article 158 of the Civil Code.
4. Notwithstanding the provisions of the preceding paragraphs, the judge or court may agree to the practice of any judicial actions that are necessary to avoid irreparable damage to the legitimate rights and interests of the parties in the process.
Third additional provision. Suspension of administrative deadlines.
1. Terms are suspended and deadlines for processing procedures of public sector entities are interrupted. The calculation of the terms will be resumed at the moment when the present royal decree or, where appropriate, its extensions, loses its validity.
2. The suspension of terms and the interruption of deadlines will apply to the entire public sector defined in Law 39/2015, of October 1, on the Common Administrative Procedure of Public Administrations.
3. Notwithstanding the foregoing, the competent body may agree, by means of a reasoned resolution, the management and instruction measures strictly necessary to avoid serious damage to the rights and interests of the interested party in the procedure and whenever the latter expresses its agreement, or when the interested party manifests his or her agreement that the term is not suspended.
4. This provision shall not affect the procedures and resolutions referred to in the first section, when they are referred to situations closely related to the facts justifying the State of Alarm.
Fourth additional provision. Suspension of the statute of limitations and expiration.
The statute of limitations and expiration of any actions and rights will be suspended during the term of the State of Alarm and, where appropriate, of the extensions that are adopted.
Fifth additional provision. Character of agents of the authority of the members of the Armed Forces.
In accordance with the third additional provision of Law 39/2007, of November 19, on the Military Career, in relation to articles 15.3 and 16 e) of Organic Law 5/2005, of November 17, on Defense National, the members of the Armed Forces in the exercise of the functions provided for in this royal decree shall be agents of the authority.
First final provision. Ratification of the measures adopted by the competent authorities of the Public Administrations.
1. All the provisions and measures previously adopted by the competent authorities of the autonomous communities and local entities on the occasion of the COVID-19 coronavirus are ratified, which will continue in force and will produce the effects provided for in them, provided they are compatible with this royal decree.
2. The ratification contemplated in this provision is understood without prejudice to the judicial ratification provided for in article 8.6.2.º of Law 29/1998, of July 13.
Second final provision. Qualification.
During the validity of the State of Alarm declared by this royal decree, the Government may issue successive decrees that modify or extend the measures established therein, of which it shall report to the Congress of Deputies in accordance with the provisions of article 8.2 of the Organic Law 4/1981, of June 1.
Third final provision. Entry into force.
This royal decree shall enter into force at the time of its publication in the “Official State Letter.”
Submitted in Madrid on March 14, 2020
The First Vice President of the Government and Minister of the Presidency,
Relations with the Courts and Democratic Memory,
CARMEN CALVO POYATO
Hope this helps to clear up any doubts or concerns you might have with regard to Spain’s adopted protocols for stopping the spread of COVID-19.
We’ll keep you updated as new information comes in!
Stay home and take care!
By EMILY BENSON
Photo by ISABEL TROYA