Second lockdown could still happen if people don’t follow the rules, warned Dominic Raab.
The latest set of measures to try and stop the spread of coronavirus has divided the nation this week.
From Thursday (September 24), all pubs, bars and restaurants must operate a table service only, and close at 10pm. That’s full closing, not just announcing last orders.
The government is also extending requirements to wear face coverings, for workers in shops, and those in taxis and indoor hospitality, except when seated at a table.
Businesses will be fined and closed if they breach the rules, including with £10k fines.
But despite all the changes, it turns out a full national lockdown isn’t quite off the cards yet.
What did Dominic Raab warn about a second lockdown?
The foreign secretary told Sky News if “everyone plays by the rules’ then a lockdown may not be needed.
However, he was quick to warn that a “small minority” could end up ruining it for everyone.
He said: “Let’s hope that we can get through the winter months if we take these measures and if everyone plays by the rules, and we go into Christmas not needing to go into that national lockdown with all the impact on society and families but also the damage it would do to businesses.”
Raab went on to defend the government’s decision to impose a curfew on bars and restaurants, despite figures suggesting they are responsible for just 5% of COVID-19 cases.
Let’s hope that we can get through the winter months.
“We know that in bars and restaurants, particularly after people have had a few drinks, as you go into the later hours of the evening, that there’s a risk that the compliance with the guidance ebbs a little bit,” he said.
“We’re confident based on the evidence that we’ve got domestically and internationally that it’s one element of those that we need to make.”
New coronavirus rules
From Monday (September 28), a maximum of 15 people can attend wedding ceremonies and receptions. However, 30 are still able to attend a funeral.
Further, the rule of six will now apply on all adult team sports.
“These rules will only work if people comply,” Boris Johnson said. “They will be enforced by tighter penalties.”
The penalty for those breaking the rule of six will be £200, for first-time offenders.
Elsewhere, the government has changed its stance on working from home.
Previously, workers were encouraged to return to their offices and other places of work. But now, the government is asking people to do their jobs from home, where possible.
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