1) Going to work
Workplace guidance has been updated to reflect the Prime Minister’s statement (17 July), which highlighted that the government’s advice on going to work will change from 1 August.
From this date, employers should ensure workplaces are safe whilst also enabling working from home
In order to keep the virus under control, it is important that people work safely. Working from home remains one way to do this. However, the risk of transmission can be substantially reduced if COVID-19 secure guidelines are followed closely.
Employers should consult with their employees to determine who, from the 1 August 2020, can come into the workplace safely taking account of a person’s use of public transport, childcare responsibilities, protected characteristics, and other individual circumstances. Extra consideration should be given to those people at higher risk.
When it is decided that workers should come into their place of work then this will need to be reflected in the COVID-19 risk assessment and actions taken to manage the risks of transmission in line with this guidance. It is vital employers engage with workers to ensure they feel safe returning to work, and they should avoid forcing anyone into an unsafe workplace.
Updated guidance for your sector can be found here: https://bit.ly/sectorsocialdist.
2) Face covering exemptions
As per yesterday’s Employer Bulletin, from today (24 July), face coverings are mandatory in additional enclosed spaces.
Exemptions to this include anyone under the age of 11, or those with disabilities, or hidden health conditions such as breathing difficulties, mental health conditions or autism.
People are not required to prove they are exempt and it is for individuals to choose how they would want to communicate this to others. For those who would feel more comfortable showing something that says they do not have to wear a face covering, exemption cards are available to print or display on mobile phones – https://bit.ly/FCExemptionBadges.
Full guidance on face coverings can be found here: https://bit.ly/FaceCoveringUpdatedGuidance.
The attached guide provides advice on handling face covering exemptions in stores and branches. We ask that you consider taking the steps and use the language suggested in the guide if you see someone entering or inside a store not wearing a face covering. Please note charity organisations working with the government have been made aware of this too.
3) Update on travel corridors
The government has today (24 July 2020) added Estonia, Latvia, Slovakia, Slovenia and St Vincent and the Grenadines to the list of travel corridors, after reviewing the latest risk assessments.
The 5 new countries have been added to the current list of destinations from which passengers do not need to self-isolate when arriving in England. The changes, which will take effect in England from Tuesday 28 July 2020.
Further details on the announcement can be found here: https://bit.ly/UpdateTravelCorridors.
4) Business events & conferences
Business events, conferences and events centres will be given the go ahead to reopen on 1 October adhering to social distancing.
A number of pilots will take place at event venues across the country to plan for a return to large-scale events and test how best to implement social distancing practises. Details of these pilots will be finalised in partnership with the sector in the coming weeks.
New guidance, published by the Department for Digital Culture, Media and Sport and the Association of Event Organisers, will help event organisers, venue operators and participants in the UK understand how they can work and host business events and conferences and keep both their guests and staff safe.
Full guidance can be found here: https://bit.ly/VisitorEconomyGuidance.