Covid-19: Wales takes first steps to ease lockdown
- Sunday 31st May 2020
Following the easing of lockdown restrictions in England and Scotland, the Welsh First Minister announces the first tentative steps to ease lockdown in Wales.
On Friday last week the Welsh First Minister Mark Drakeford announced the first easing to the strict stay-at-home Covid-19 restrictions to enable two households in the same local area to meet outdoors and exercise subject to social distancing and strict hand hygiene. In this context the term local was defined as not travelling more than five miles.
The changes announced follow the third review of the regulations by Welsh Ministers. That review was based on the latest scientific evidence from SAGE and the advice of the Chief Medical Officer for Wales which concludes that the virus can only survive outside for minutes rather than hours/days on indoor surfaces and that therefore the risk of transmission is lower outdoors than indoors.
Specifically, the changes to the regulations will come into effect on Monday June 1st include:
• Allowing members of 2 separate households in the same local area to meet outdoors at any one time as long as they maintain social distancing. There is a low risk of infection if the 2 metre physical distancing rule is maintained while outdoors. This does not need to be the same people from the same household every time. ‘Local’ means not travelling more than 5 miles from home
• The 2 households can meet in private outdoor spaces, such as gardens, but this comes with a higher risk of infection as people may have to pass through someone’s private home to reach a garden. The Welsh Government will provide guidance about the precautions which can be taken to minimise these risks
• Allowing weddings and civil partnerships to take place if the bride or groom is terminally ill.
The First Minister confirmed that beauty and tourist spots will remain closed.
A further review by Welsh Ministers is planned on June 18th. That review will consider the reopening non-essential retail, increased child care and travel, reopening of outdoor sites as well as the reopening of facilities for the non-professional elite athletes to train safely.
Click here to read more on the announcement.