Business Secretary Alok Sharma has confirmed that non essential shops can reopen from June 15 in England if they comply with ‘COVID secure guidelines’. COVID-19 secure guidelines will help shops reopen safely and stop the risk of more infections, and help reopen to economy in a safe way.
Mr Sharma has said retail outlets will be able to reopen again from June 15, so long as they comply with COVID-19 secure guidelines.
He says it’s thanks to the “efforts of the British people” that they have “succeeded in getting the R-rate under control”.
He says parts of the economy can now begin to open in a “phased manner”.
He also announced another 286 coronavirus deaths, up from 55 reported yesterday, which was the lowest since lockdown began.
There have been no new deaths in Northern Ireland now for three days running.
Business Secretary Alok Sharma confirmed that non-essential shops in England can reopen on Monday if they can comply with social distancing rules.
He told the Downing Street press conference: “I can confirm today that retail outlets which have been required to be closed will be able to open their doors again from Monday June 15 so long as they comply with the COVID secure guidelines we published on May 25.
“This is the latest step in the careful restarting of our economy and will enable high streets up and down the country to spring back to life.”
Enforcement notices can be issued if shops reopen without following the guidance, he added.
Shops will have to be cleaned more frequently, paying close attention to high-contact objects like door handles and keyboards.
Businesses should provide handwashing facilities or hand sanitisers at entry and exit points.
Employers should display a notice display in their workplaces to show their employees, customers and other visitors to their workplace, that they have followed this guidance.
Businesses that are planning to reopen will need to complete a risk assessment before being allowed to open doors again.
Mr Sharma also said businesses could be punished if they do not comply with guidelines.
The Government is also keeping the two-metre social distancing rule under review.
“When it is safe to do so, we will see whether you can move to a shorter distance but ultimately we keep all of these things under review,” he told the No 10 briefing.
“There are other countries in the world that have moved from two metres to closer distances. Of course, they are further along in terms of their road map, in terms of opening up businesses.
“We are taking a cautious view on this. I completely understand why for economic reasons businesses will want to have a look at this two-metre rule.”
Other countries, such as Germany, have different rules on how far apart individuals should stay from eachother.
Mr Sharma said: “I do get why businesses in a whole range of sectors make the economic case why you would want to move closer than two metres.
“But, ultimately, this is about what is safe. We will keep this under review.
“We will only make changes when it is safe to do so.”