Hertfordshire health chief urges residents to ‘keep being sensible’ after Covid restrictions lifted

As part of the proposed changes there would no longer be limits on social contact or social distancing

Friday, 9th July 2021, 1:14 pm
Updated Friday, 9th July 2021, 1:16 pm

Public health chief Jim McManus is urging Hertfordshire residents to “keep being sensible”, after any lifting of the legal requirements to prevent the spread of Covid-19.

Within days the Government is expected to announce whether – or not – it will go ahead with plans to remove legal restrictions on social contact, life events and the re-opening of venues from July 19.

As part of the proposed changes there would no longer be limits on social contact or social distancing – and no legal requirement to wear a face covering.

Public health chief Jim McManus is urging Hertfordshire residents to 'keep being sensible'

But in light of this week’s announcement, Hertfordshire’s director of public health Jim McManus has stressed the continuing need for people to take their own steps to halt the spread of infection.

And – noting the mixed reactions to the planned lifting of restrictions -he’s urging residents to be ‘kind’ to each other too.

“While many people will be excited at the prospect of restrictions being lifted on 19 July, others will be fearful or apprehensive,” said Mr McManus.

“We all need to be kind to each other as we move into this next phase.

“The virus has not gone away, in fact cases are rising and it’s important to recognise that everyone’s circumstances are different and what feels comfortable to one person might not feel that way to another.”

Mr McManus says the ‘most important thing’ now is that people keep taking steps to stop infection.

He stresses the continuing need to give people space and to wear face coverings in crowded indoor areas, as well as ventilating workplaces and social spaces.

He also points to the need for over-18s to get vaccinated – and for anyone who has symptoms of Covid-19 to get tested and to self-isolate.

“The most important thing right now is for us all to keep doing the things which stop infection,” he said.

“Get vaccinated if you are 18 or over, give people space, wear face coverings in crowded indoor areas, ventilate your workplaces and social spaces, and if you have symptoms get tested and self-isolate.

“These have kept us safe and will keep us safe still.

“Covid-19 won’t end when the rules changes, and we need to keep being sensible – as almost everyone has been for the last 15 months – and keep each other safe.

“Let’s keep looking out for one another and recognise that we’re all going to be moving forward at our own pace.”

As part of the next stage of the government’s Covid-19 roadmap, nightclubs would be allowed to open and pubs and restaurants would no longer have to provide table service.

There would be no limits on the numbers attending weddings, funerals, concerts, sports events or worship.

And the guidance to work from home, if possible, would go too.

The proposed changes were published in a document by the government on Monday (July 5).

According to that document, the government will assess the ‘four tests’ again on Monday (July 12) , in order to decide whether to proceed with the changes on July 19.