This post includes a rolling update of new legislation and guidance on coronavirus COVID-19 during the week commencing 4 July 2021 *.
Legislation/Statements &c relating to Step 4 in England
- Prime Minister sets out plan to ease restrictions at step 4. COVID restrictions are set to end in England from step 4 of the Roadmap after the Prime Minister set out how life will soon return close to normal. Prime Minister’s Office, 10 Downing Street, (5 July 2021).
- PM statement at coronavirus press conference: 5 July 2021. Prime Minister Boris Johnson made a statement at the coronavirus press conference (“Transcript of the speech, exactly as it was delivered”). (5 July 2021).
- COVID-19 Update: The Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, Sajid Javid. HC Hansard, 5 July 2021, Vol 698, Col 584, (5 July 2021).
“As I set out to the House last week, I remain confident that we can move to step 4 in England on 19 July and that the Government will make their final decision on this on 12 July, so today I wish to set out further details of what step 4 will look like. In essence, our national response to covid will change from one of rules and regulations to one of guidance and good sense. We will revoke all social distancing guidance, including the 2 metre rule, except for in specific settings such as ports of entry and medical settings, where of course it would continue to make sense.
It will no longer be a legal requirement to wear face coverings in any setting, including public transport, although we will advise this as a voluntary measure for crowded and enclosed spaces. It will no longer be necessary to work from home. There will be no limits on the number of people we can meet. There will no limits on the number of people who can attend life events such as weddings and funerals, and there will be no restrictions on communal worship or singing.
We will remove legal requirements on how businesses operate. Capacity caps will all be lifted and there will no longer be any requirement to offer table service. All businesses that were forced to close their doors will be able to open them once again. And we will lift the cap on named care home visitors so that families can come together in the ways they choose to do so. Ministers will provide further statements this week on self-isolation for fully vaccinated people, including for international travel, and on restrictions in education settings, including the removal of bubbles and contact isolation in schools.
Today, I can also confirm to the House that we have completed our review of certification. While already a feature of international travel, we have concluded that we do not think using certification as a condition of entry is a way to go. For people who have not been offered a full course of vaccination and for businesses, we felt that the impact outweighed the public health benefits. Of course, businesses can use covid-status certification at their own discretion and, from step 4 onwards, the NHS covid pass will be accessible through the NHS app and other digital routes. This will be the main way that people can provide their covid status—a status that they will achieve once they have completed a full vaccine course, a recent negative test or some other proof of natural immunity.”
- Ministerial confirmation on choirs: Oliver Dowden Tweet Update on Choirs, (6 July 2021).
Update to Parliament on self-isolation rules. Oral statement to Parliament by the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care on self-isolation rules for those who have had both COVID-19 vaccine doses. Department of Health and Social Care and The Rt Hon Sajid Javid MP. (6 July 2021).
“…from the 16th of August, when even more people will have the protection of both doses and when modelling suggests the risk from the virus will be lower, anyone who’s a close contact of a positive case will no longer have to self-isolate, if they’ve been fully vaccinated.“
- Self-isolation to be eased for fully vaccinated adults in Step 4. From 16 August, double jabbed individuals and under 18s will no longer need to self-isolate if they are identified as a close contact of someone with COVID-19, Department of Health and Social Care and The Rt Hon Sajid Javid MP, (6 July 2021). This Press Release includes further information on self-isolation.
- COVID-19: Trains, planes and buses can have their own face mask rules after 19 July. Speaking during a Transport Committee evidence session, Grant Shapps said individual companies could implement travel conditions beyond the government’s final stage of lockdown easing if they so wished. But he confirmed that he will not be issuing any “blanket instructions” to companies compelling them to keep COVID safety measures in place. Sky News, 7 July 2021 13:59. [Hansard Reference to follow].
Health and Safety Executive
COVID secure workplace measures in England should remain in place until at least 19 July. With the delay in easing of restrictions, businesses still need to have COVID-secure measures in place to protect workers, visitors and customers. There are different dates and requirements for easing of COVID-19 restrictions in Scotland and Wales. HSE, (7 July 2021).
Church of England‡
- Covid-19: Bishop Sarah’s tribute to sacrifices of many as Government prepares to lift restrictions. Bishop Sarah’s tribute ends: “We will await the new Government advice for places of worship and adapt our guidance to churches accordingly.” (5 July 2021).
Updated Wednesday July 07, 15:48: Updated document:
Law and Religion UK
- Law and religion round-up – 4 July. Congregational singing in England; COVID-19 and charity AGMs.
Post last updated, 9July 2021 at 10:58.
* Information on COVID-19 on L&RUK
- These updates are published at the start of each week; they are not reissued, but new items are added throughout the week as they become available, providing a “rolling update” of the latest developments during the current week. They are also added to COVID-19 Coronavirus: legislation and guidance which is the main source of information, and listed with the newest items last (unlike the CofE documents, infra); items in the weekly updates yet to be added are marked “§“. The updates for the earlier weeks are here.
- Church of England documents are listed under their full title and issue number, in the same order as they appear on the Church’s web site.