Government has powers to shut down mass gatherings and will not support them with emergency workers as part of new measures to combat coronavirus
- In a press conference today the PM said people should avoid mass gatherings
- He said that people should avoid pubs, clubs, theatres and non-essential travel
- Mr Johnson said the government does have powers to close venues if necessary
- Coronavirus symptoms: what are they and should you see a doctor?
The government has powers to shut down mass gatherings and will not support them with emergency workers as part of new measures to combat the coronavirus crisis.
In a press conference today, the Prime Minister said mass gatherings are something ‘we are now moving emphatically away from’, as he urged the country to stop all ‘non-essential’ contact with others.
Mr Johnson said people should avoid pubs, clubs and theatres, stop all non-essential contact and travel, and work from home if they can.
Asked venues were being ordered to close, the Prime Minister said: ‘What we are doing is giving very strong advice that public venues such as theatres should no longer be visited.
‘The proprietors of those venues are taking the logical steps that you would imagine, you are seeing the change happen already.
In a press conference today, the Prime Minister said mass gatherings are something ‘we are now moving emphatically away from’, as he urged the country to stop all ‘non essential’ contact with others
‘As for enforcement, we have the powers if necessary but I don’t believe it will be necessary to use those powers.’
What is the Government recommending I do and what is it doing to tackle coronavirus in the UK?
- Avoid social contact
- Work from home if possible
- Avoid pubs, clubs, theatres and other social venues
- If someone in your household has symptoms of coronavirus you should all self-isolate for 14 days
- If possible only go outside for exercise well away from other people
- Ask for help with daily necessities like food and medical supplies
- If that is not possible – for example if you live in a remote area – you should limit social contact as much as possible
- Vulnerable groups should self-isolate for 12 weeks from this weekend.
- They include people aged 70 and over and other adults who would normally be advised to have the flu vaccination, including people with chronic diseases such as chronic heart disease or chronic kidney disease, and pregnant women
- Unnecessary visits to friends and relatives in care homes should cease
- Schools to remain open for the time being
- Londoners need to socially distance and work from home even more than the rest of the UK because the disease is more widespread there
- Mass gatherings will no longer receive emergency services cover if they do go ahead
- Increase in coronavirus testing with ‘complete surveillance’ testing in intensive care, hospitals testing patients with pneumonia and GPs testing in the community
Mr Johnson also said that from Tuesday the Government would no longer be supporting mass gatherings with emergency workers.
The PM set out the need for ‘drastic action’ to tackle the ‘fast growth’ of coronavirus across the UK as increased social distancing measures are introduced for the population.
As part of the measures, anyone living in a household with somebody who has either a persistent cough or fever must now also isolate themselves for 14 days.
All people should avoid gatherings and crowded places, while people who are vulnerable – including those are elderly – will need to undertake even more drastic measures.
The Prime Minister said that according to the Scientific Advisory Group for Emergencies (Sage) ‘it looks as though we are now approaching the fast growth part of the upward curve’ in the number of cases.
‘Without drastic action cases could double every five or six days,’ he said.
Mr Johnson said that from Tuesday mass gatherings are something ‘we are now moving emphatically away from’.
He said ‘if you or anyone in your household’ had one of the two symptoms – a high temperature or continuous cough – ‘you should stay at home for 14 days.
‘That means that if possible you should not go out, even to buy food or essentials, other than for exercise and in that case at a safe distance from others.’
In a dramatic escalation of the Government’s response, Mr Johnson said all members of the public needed to take extra action.
‘Now is the time for everyone to stop non-essential contact with others and to stop all unnecessary travel,’ he said.
Mr Johnson said London appeared to be ‘a few weeks ahead’ of other areas and urged people in the capital to pay special attention to the measures – including home working – suggested by the Government.