CAUTIOUS MOVE TO STEP 4

Changes to COVID-19 restrictions on 19 July

Following the Government announcement to move to Step 4 of their Roadmap to Recovery, most legal restrictions to control Covid-19 will be lifted in England on Monday 19 July.

The Government described this next step as a ‘phase of continued caution whilst managing the risks of Covid-19’, and Halton Borough Council is also taking this approach because cases of Covid-19 are high and rising in many areas, including Halton.

The current rate of infection is 360 per 100,000 population (seven days up to 9 July), while admissions to local hospitals are also increasing. Vaccination uptake is good, however, we have not reached a point where enough of our population have been fully vaccinated. Halton remains listed as an Enhanced Response Area.

Based on current data, the Council is not yet in a position to remove all Covid-19 safety measures from its buildings, venues and services. Therefore, the intention is to continue with the measures currently in place until at least 12 August, when the Council will review arrangements in the context of the data at that time.

For example, this means that members of the public visiting Council venues will be encouraged to continue wearing face coverings; schools will be advised to continue with current arrangements (including class bubbles and face coverings) until the end of the summer term; and measures currently in place within care homes will remain.

Cllr Mike Wharton, Leader of Halton Borough Council said:

“Halton’s approach is a careful one, based on our local circumstances.

“The shift from legal restrictions to advice and personal responsibility presents us all with new challenges as we navigate what ‘living with Covid-19’ means for us in our personal and our working lives. But the Council will continue to do all it can to support our workforce and our community as we take these next tentative steps together towards normality.

“And we are asking residents to continue your efforts in being strong, kind and safe – get fully vaccinated and continue as much as possible with the use of face coverings, social distancing, good hand hygiene and regular testing.”

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