British Prime Minister Boris Johnson released a four-step roadmap on Monday to “remove all legal limits on social contacts” in England no earlier than June 21, assuming certain tests are met.
Because it is important: The UK has the worst death toll from coronavirus in Europe and saw its economy contract by 9.9% in 2020, the biggest drop in production in more than 300 years.
- The Johnson administration imposed a nationwide lockdown for the third time in January as cases spiked due to the emergence of a new, more infectious variant of the coronavirus.
- But the launch of the vaccine in the country has been among the best in the world, with 26.1% of the population vaccinated as of Monday, resulting in a substantial drop in infections and optimism that the outbreak will be over. will slow down in the coming months.
Details: Before taking each step, the government will review the infection data and ensure that the following four steps are taken:
- The vaccine deployment the program continues successfully.
- The evidence shows vaccines are effective enough to reduce hospitalizations and deaths of those vaccinated.
- Infection rates don’t risk a sudden spike in hospitalizations that would put unsustainable pressure on the National Health Service.
- The government assessment of the risks is not fundamentally changed by new virus variants.
If those tests are met, the gradual lifting of confinement restrictions will not begin before the following dates:
- March 8: Schools and universities will be open to all students.
- March 29: Outdoor sports and mixing in groups of six will be allowed.
- April 12th: Gyms, libraries, beauty salons, outdoor hospitality, all retail and indoor activities for children will be allowed.
- may 17th: Indoor entertainment and attractions, indoor organized sports, 30-person outdoor limits, some large events with capacity limits, and international travel (subject to review) will be allowed.
- June 21: There are no legal limits on social contact: nightclubs will reopen and larger events will be allowed.
What they are saying: “There will be many people worried that we are being too ambitious and that it is arrogant to impose any kind of plan on a virus. But I also believe that the vaccination program has drastically changed the odds in our favor and it is on that basis that we can now proceed.” Johnson told members of Parliament on Monday.
Read the full plan.