Move to Step 4 in England confirmed for 19 July

13, July 2021

  • “Absolutely vital to proceed with caution …”
  • New guidance is published
  • ‘Gradual’ return to the office

In a press conference yesterday evening (12 July), Prime Minister Boris Johnson confirmed that England will move to step 4 from 19 July. 

He said that we cannot return immediately to how life was before COVID-19. While cases are high and rising, everybody needs to continue to act carefully and remain cautious. The next steps have been set out in the moving to step 4 guidance summarised below:

New guidance on moving to step 4
The Government has published new guidance on moving to step 4 of the roadmap for England that outlines the key protections that will remain in place, the pathway through the summer and the five-point plan to manage the virus in the next phase. 

At step 4, while many of the legal restrictions that the Government has imposed through the pandemic will be lifted, cautious guidance will remain, making it clear this is not yet a return to normal. The Government will continue to manage the virus and provide guidance over the coming months.

Key protections that will be kept in place:

  • Testing when people have symptoms and targeted asymptomatic testing in high risk workplaces and to help people manage their personal risk.
  • Isolating when positive or when contacted by NHS Test and Trace or when advised to by the NHS COVID-19 app.
  • Border quarantine: for all arriving from red list countries, and for those people arriving from amber list countries, other than those UK residents fully vaccinated in the UK vaccine programme.
  • Whilst Government is no longer instructing people to work from home if they can, Government expects and recommends a gradual return over the summer
  • Government expects and recommends that people wear face coverings in crowded areas such as public transport
  • Being outside or letting fresh air in
  • Minimising the number, proximity and duration of social contacts.
  • Encouraging and supporting businesses and large events to use the NHS COVID Pass in high-risk settings to help to limit the risk of infection.

We must remain cautious – especially for individuals, businesses and the vulnerable whilst prevalence is high.

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