Vaccine certificates for nightclubs and a ‘gradual’ return to work from July 19, Sajid Javid announces

·3-min read

Nightclubs and other venues holding large indoor events will be encouraged to introduce Covid-19 “certification” measures to avoid infection outbreaks after lockdown laws are ditched on July 19.

The Government also wants the return to work to be “gradual” although there will not be specific guidance issued to individual employers.

The advice to nightclubs and other venues holding large events, with people mixing together without social distancing, raised speculation that “vaccine passports” could also be introduced for some big pubs which get packed with crowds.

Ministers have previously denied they would be used for pubs.

Guidance was being issued on Monday which may give more details on the type of venues to be affected by the new guidance and the timing of when it will come in.

Clubbers, and revellers at other large events, could be asked to prove they have been double-jabbed, with the second innoculation at least two weeks previously, have a negative lateral flow test, or have a PCR test showing positive for the virus within the last six months.

Mr Javid said Freedom Day will go ahead on July 19 and would take us “a step closer to the life we used to live”.

He admitted there was “no perfect” time for Freedom Day.

He told the Commons: “This is not the end of the road. It’s the start of a new phase of continued caution while we live with this virus and we manage the risks.”

Boris Johnson will press ahead next Monday with Stage 4 of the Government’s roadmap out of lockdown, which will see legally enforceable restrictions scrapped.

However, as coronavirus cases rise sharply, fuelled by the Delta variant, a number of scientists have warned of the dangers of the “big bang” approach to fully ending lockdown.

Government guidelines will state there will be an expectation of people to wear masks indoors, in crowded places and on public transport, according to vaccines minister Nadhim Zahawi.

Bosses and employees will decide on working from home arrangements but the Government’s overall aim is for a “gradual” shift back to the workplace.

However, Dr Susan Hopkins, from Public Health England, personally believes that if people can “do your business effectively from home then I think over the next four to six weeks, with a rise in cases, we should try our best to do that”.

Advice for the clinially extremely vulnerable is being published on how these individuals can lower the risks of getting Covid amid the third wave of cases.

A further 31,772 confirmed Covid infections were announced yesterday, including 3,669 in London.

Hospitalisations and deaths are far lower than in previous waves, after the link with cases was largely broken by vaccines, but experts are becoming concerned about the growing number of patients being admitted with coronavirus.

The Prime Minister has previously stressed that the ending of lockdown had to be irreversible but now restrictions may be reintroduced as a “last resort”.

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