The Covid rules are being tightened once again from Tuesday 30th November 2021, in response to concerns over the newly identified Omicron variant.

So what are the key changes?

  • From Tuesday 30th November it will once again be compulsory to wear a face covering on public transport and in shops in England.
  • Any contacts of suspected Omicron cases will be required to self-isolate for 10 days, regardless of their vaccination status.
  • From 0400 GMT Tuesday anyone entering the UK will require a PCR test within 48 hours of arrival and will need to self-isolate until they receive a negative result.
  • Those eligible are encouraged to take up the booster jab to enhance protection

What action must employers take

In response to this change in guidance employers are encouraged to revisit and update their existing Covid risk assessment. Assess the risks to see if there are any changes needed to the measures you already have in place to keep your workforce and customers safe.

  • Where masks/face coverings are mandatory you must ensure your employees are compliant whilst at work.  
  • Encourage high standards of personal hygiene and provide access to handwashing and hand sanitising facilities.
  • Remind employees and customers of the need to observe social distancing measures.
  • Encourage employees to notify you if they are notified they are a close contact of a suspected Omicron case. You must ensure they self-isolate for 10 days regardless of whether or not they have been vaccinated.
  • Maintain awareness of employee travels and ensure those returning from abroad after the deadline observe the mandatory PCR testing requirements and do not return to work until such time as they have received a negative result.
  • Be clear about the payment arrangements that will apply to employees undergoing mandatory self-isolation. Remember to be consistent in your approach.

If you have questions about the measures you should have in place to protect your workforce contact us on 01284 336060 for more advice.