Covid-19 Daily Bulletin
15 June 2020
A series of daily updates for CHO members regarding relevant updates pertaining to Coronavirus from home and abroad.
- “Non-essential” shops in England will open their doors again today, for the first time in almost three months. Retailers will still be responsible for ensuring that social distancing measures are adhered to, with floor markings and plastic screens greeting shoppers. Boris Johnson has told people to “shop with confidence.”, but many retailers are also urging the Government to help the high street with a short term cut in VAT or a temporary income tax cut for lower income workers.
- From today those travelling on public transport in England will be required to wear a face mask/covering, under new lockdown rules.
- The UK’s daily coronavirus death toll yesterday stood at 36 recorded deaths, which is the lowest since lockdown began. Sunday figures, however, are comparatively lower due to weekend reporting delays.
- The Government has launched a “cross governmental commission” which will examine “all aspects” of racial inequality in the UK. Writing in the Telegraph, Prime Minister Boris Johnson acknowledged there was “much more that we need to do” in order to tackle racism in the UK but said people should not attempt to “re-write the past”. The Commission will be overseen by Equalities Minister, Kemi Badenoch.
- The Prime Minister will hold video talks with European Commission President, Ursula von der Leyen today, as the 30 th June deadline for extending the transition period draws closer. The UK Government have repeatedly insisted that they will neither accept nor request an extension to the transition period, despite no significant progress being made in negotiations so far.
- More than 100 people were arrested in London yesterday, after far-right activists met on mass claiming to be defending statues in the capital from anti-racism activists.
- First Minister of Scotland, Nicola Sturgeon is expected to announce gradual easing of restrictions on Thursday. The announcement could include a date for retailers in Scotland to reopen.
- Scotland’s Education Secretary John Swinney has suggested that schools in Scotland are likely to continue “blended learning” until the end of the next school year. Pupils in Scotland are expected to return on 11 th August with a mixture of at home and in school learning.
- Wales are also hopeful that lockdown restrictions will be eased very shortly, with Sarah Jones of the Welsh Retail Consortium stating businesses were “hopeful” that they would be able to reopen shortly.
- Stormont will consider a timetable of reopening at an executive meeting today. Under the proposed plans, hotels, bars and cafes could reopen on 3 rd July.
- The global death toll from Covid 19 now stands at over 433,000. There have been 7.9m confirmed cases worldwide.
- French President Emmanuel Macron has reopened cafes and restaurants, and care homes will now be able to receive visitors. Travel to other European countries will now also be allowed in France.
- Germany, Belgium, Croatia and Switzerland are now fully reopening their borders with EU countries from today.
- India has seen a surge in cases, with almost 1 in 3 people recently testing positive for Coronavirus in Delhi. India currently has the fourth highest number of cases in the world, with over 300,000.
- Brazil overtaken the UK and now has the second highest coronavirus death toll in the world, after the U.S. The countries death toll now stands at 41,828.
- The Housing Secretary Robert Jenrick has written to survivors and the bereaved of the Grenfell Tower tragedy, three years on. In the letter, Jenrick stated the Government remains as “committed as ever to ensuring that such a tragedy can never happen again.”
- The Institute for Fiscal Studies has released a report into the “geography of Covid 19” in England, arguing that “national policymakers should also be alert to differences in local needs” when looking at any recovery plans.