Boris Johnson Reveals New COVID-19 Rules.
Face masks will become compulsory for bar staff, shop workers, waiters and taxi passengers in an effort to combat the rise in coronavirus cases in England, the prime minister has announced. Fines for failing to wear a face mask will rise to £200 and will be extended to customers when they are not seated at a table, Boris Johnson told MPs.
Announcing the new coronavirus restrictions, the PM said the UK had reached a “perilous turning point” in its fight against COVID-19 and needed to “act now to avoid still graver consequences later on”.
He also warned that the measures could remain in place for as long as six months, declaring: “For the time being, this virus is a fact of our lives.”
The restrictions announced by the PM – who will address the nation from Number 10 later – are as follows:
> Office workers should work from home again where possible – although those in “key public services and in all professions” where this is not possible, such as construction and retail, should continue to go in. Mr Johnson later said that people should keep going in if it is important for their job, mental health or wellbeing
> From Thursday, all pubs, bars and restaurants must offer table service only and close at 10pm – but delivery services can remain open
> The requirement to wear a face covering has been extended to staff in retail, people in taxis and everyone using hospitality services
> Fines for not wearing a face covering will now double to £200 for a first offence
> COVID-secure guidelines will become a legal obligation for retail, leisure and tourism firms, with those who do not comply running the risk of fines of £10,000 or closure
> Only 15 people can now attend weddings, but 30 can still go to a funeral
> The “rule of six” has been extended to indoor sports teams, such as five-a-side football games
> The phased reopening of stadiums for sporting events from 1 October has been scrapped
But the PM has stopped short – for now – of introducing more sweeping and stringent measures to try and halt the rise in cases. He acknowledged this in his Commons address, telling MPs: “I want to stress that this is by no means a return to the full lockdown of March. We’re not issuing a general instruction to stay at home.