Thursday, 20 January 2022

Easing of Plan B restrictions

England's Plan B measures are to end from next Thursday, with mandatory face coverings in public places and Covid passports both dropped, the government has announced.

The government will also immediately be dropping its advice for people to work from home.

The news announcement comes as scientists believe the Omicron wave has peaked nationally.

This is not the finish line as the virus and future variants cannot be eradicated - instead we need to learn to live with the virus.

Ventilation of enclosed spaces, washing hands and self-isolating if positive are all things we can do to reduce the risk. If you haven't been vaccinated, please do so, and get your booster if you have already had your first two jabs. 

In summary, the following changes to restrictions will be made:

  • Mandatory Covid passports for entering nightclubs and large events will end, though organisations can choose to use the NHS Covid pass if they wish
  • People will no longer be advised to work from home and should discuss their return to offices with employers
  • Face masks will no longer be mandated, though people are still advised to wear coverings in enclosed or crowded spaces and when meeting strangers. 
  • From today, secondary school pupils will no longer have to wear face masks in classrooms and government guidance on their use in communal areas will be removed next Thursday (27th January).

Further announcements on the easing of travel rules and restrictions on care home visits in England are expected in the coming days.