Homeworking could stay beyond June 21 if Covid cases continue to rise
WORK from home may take a little longer as government officials consider delaying the return of workers to offices.
Whitehall plans to keep the advice from working from home on June 21 when Boris is set to lift the lockdown.
The decision will be taken at the expense of lifting other lockdown restrictions.
Boris has already taken drastic steps to remove Portugal from the green list in the hope of protecting the last leg of its roadmap.
Returning to offices is considered the least economically damaging option to curb the spread of the deadly virus.
According to the Telegraph, government sources have confirmed officials are reviewing whether to retain the ‘work from home’ guidelines in case hospitalizations and Covid deaths increase in the coming weeks.
June 21 is slated to be Freedom Day in the UK when lockdown restrictions are expected to be lifted as the final step on the roadmap.
The constraints on all social contacts will be lifted and the cap on the number of participants in events will be removed.
Although that date was set in pencil by Boris, he will only make a firm decision a week in advance, when ministers have the chance to see the most recent data on the impact of the new variants.
The Sun urged readers to sign up with the Jabs Army after scientists warned plans to break out of lockdown are on the line due to soaring rates of the Indian strain.
Ministers stepped up their jab efforts – promising to deliver both doses to everyone over 50 by June 21.
Businesses in the UK have already adapted well to working from home, and many are keen to move to a more hybrid model in which employees will only travel to the office a few days a week.
A source from the Treasury told The Telegraph: “Obviously, working from home has consequences, but there is no difference between now and two weeks because the economic support will still be in place. It is not imperative to change the advice.
Health Secretary Matt Hancock clearly left the door open earlier this week for working from home and face masks to be kept beyond June 21.
Measures such as the “one meter plus” rule are about to disappear and will not be missed.
Many in the hospitality industry say the social distancing rules have seriously damaged their industry.
However, some government scientists have called that the reopening scheduled for June 21 was too early.
On Thursday, Professor John Edmunds, a member of the Government’s Science Advisory Group for Emergencies (Sage), said keeping people working from home is “one of the biggest levers” the government could pull to control the spread. virus.
The scientist called for caution in encouraging people to return to their workplaces, but stressed that any decision was “political”.
He said: “The changes in working methods have considerably reduced the contacts that adults have made…. it’s probably one of the biggest levers the government can pull, to suggest that people work from home if they can.
Professor Edmunds suggested ministers make the decision to open “as late as possible” so as to have as much data as possible on the efficacy of vaccines and the transmissibility of new variants.
He urged ministers last week to delay a full reopening on June 21.
Professor Edmunds was speaking as research from the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine found the number of daily contacts had doubled since the lockdown.
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Professor Edmunds said: “Working from home has a significant impact on limiting the number of contacts people make, not just at work, but also in the other things people do around work – having drinks with friends. colleagues afterwards and things like that, so it does, it reduces contact.
The UK recorded 5,274 new cases of Covid yesterday, the highest number of daily infections since March.
There have also been 18 other coronavirus-related deaths, bringing the total since the start of the pandemic to 127,812