United Kingdom could return to near-normal ‘possibly in time for Christmas’

Modesto Morganelli
Luglio 20, 2020

But the Prime Minister told his Downing Street press conference: "It is not for Government to decide how employers should run their companies and whether they want their workforces in the office or not - that is for companies".

Johnson also announced further funding for the NHS ahead of winter.

Also from August 1, most leisure activities, including bowling, skating rinks, casinos, beauticians, and outdoor performances can begin.

These test events will be held for sports like cricket, snooker and horse racing, with a view to allowing more fans to attend events from October - including football.

Norwich fans could be back at Carrow Road from October.

Dominic Raab, the foreign secretary, denied on Sunday there was any difference between Johnson and Vallance, telling Sophy Ridge on SkyNews: "National measures and national lockdown are the same thing".

"National lockdown was undoubtedly the right thing to do and has saved many thousands of lives", he said.

"We want to give people some sense of direction, because a lot of people are running businesses or rely on the Christmas period and need to know that if everything goes well that this is our intention. We're actively looking at innovative means of administering the vaccine", he said.

Under the new powers, local authorities can close shops, cancel events and shut outdoor public spaces to manage local outbreaks.

"Action by local councils will not always be sufficient, so next week we will publish draft regulations on how central government can intervene more effectively at a local level", he explained.

Ministers will also be able to close entire sectors or types of premises in an area and issue "stay at home" orders, Mr Johnson said.

He was was giving evidence at a House of Lords committee on Friday, alongside the chief medical officer for England, Chris Whitty, after the prime minister raised the prospect of a "significant return to normality" by Christmas.

"From Aug. 1, we will update our advice on going to work", Johnson said.

Mr Shapps said employers need to make sure workplaces are Covid-safe for employees to return to work.

"We will also allow wedding receptions for up to 30 people".

"It is my strong and honest hope that we will be able to review the outstanding restrictions and allow a more significant return to normality from November, at the earliest, possibly in time for Christmas", the British leader explained.

While at the moment, staff are being advised to work from home where possible, in future staff will be encouraged to use public transport and talk to their employers as to whether they can return safely.

Asked how many civil servants he believed should return to work in August, Mr Johnson said it was a matter to be discussed between employees and their line managers about where they can be "most productive".

Britain's death toll of more than 45,000 from confirmed cases of COVID-19 is the worst in Europe but the country has begun to lift lockdown measures as case numbers and infection rates fall.

"If we return to those sort of normal behaviours the virus will come back very fast".

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