UK Pubs And Restaurants Told To Shut In Virus Fight

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UK Pubs And Restaurants Told To Shut In Virus Fight

Cafes, pubs and restaurants must close from Friday night – except for take-away food – to tackle coronavirus, Prime Minister Boris Johnson has said.

All the UK’s nightclubs, theatres, cinemas, gyms and leisure centres have also been told to close “as soon as they reasonably can”.

Mr Johnson said the situation would be reviewed each month.

Meanwhile, the government said it will pay 80% of wages for employees who are not able to work, up to £2,500 a month.

The announcement about closures follows similar measures taken in other countries – including in Ireland, where pubs and bars were asked to close from last Sunday.

There have been 167 deaths in England from the coronavirus outbreak, as well as six in Scotland, three in Wales and one in Northern Ireland.

Speaking at a daily Downing Street press briefing, Mr Johnson said the measures would be enforced “strictly” and that licensing arrangements would make doing so “relatively simple”.

He urged people not to go out on Friday night ahead of the closures, stressing: “For now, at least physically, we need to keep people apart.”

The prime minister added: “The more effectively we follow the advice we are given, the faster this country will stage both a medical and an economic recovery in full.”

Speaking at the same briefing, Chancellor Rishi Sunak said the new measures to help out-of-work employees were “unprecedented”.

He appealed to employers to stand by their workers during the coronavirus crisis, in the wake of many firms warning of collapse.

England’s deputy chief medical officer, Dr Jenny Harries, told reporters at the briefing that the government was not advising people against going outside.

“We are saying, if you are going to go outside, go in a way that reduces your social contact,” she said.

In a separate televised address, Scotland’s First Minister Nicola Sturgeon also asked all restaurants, cafes, pubs and cinemas to close.

First Minister of Northern Ireland Arlene Foster said the measures are “for the community’s protection”, while Wales’ First Minister Mark Drakeford said the move was “the right thing to do”.

The latest announcement came after Mr Johnson said on Thursday that the UK could “turn the tide” on the coronavirus outbreak within 12 weeks.

Most UK schools closed their doors to a majority of pupils indefinitely on Friday, in an effort to stem the spread of the virus.

But many will reopen on Monday with a skeleton staff to accommodate the children of “key workers”.

Who are “key workers”?

The full list includes:

https://www.bbc.com

  • Frontline health workers such as doctors and nurses
  • Some teachers and social workers
  • Workers in key public services including those essential to the justice system, religious staff and public service journalists
  • Local and national government workers deemed crucial to delivering essential public services
  • Formula 1 To Replace Postponed Races With Virtual Grand Prix Series
  • Workers involved in food production processing, distribution, sale and delivery
  • Public safety workers including police, armed forces personnel, firefighters and prison staff
  • Essential air, water, road and rail transport workers
  • Utilities, communication and financial services staff, including postal workers and waste disposal workers

UK Pubs And Restaurants Told To Shut In Virus Fight

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