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As part of targeted measures to prevent the spread of the new Covid-19 variant Omicron, from 4am on 30 November, people in England will be required by law to wear a face covering in certain places.
The measure will be introduced as a precaution while more information is gathered and assessed on the variant’s transmissibility and any possible effect on Covid-19 vaccines, Downing Street said.
Face coverings are compulsory in shops and settings such as banks, post offices and hairdressers, as well as on public transport, unless individuals are exempt. Hospitality settings are excluded from the rules, except takeaways that do not offer consumption of food or drinks on the premises.
Boris Johnson said: “The measures taking effect today are proportionate and responsible, and will buy us time in the face of this new variant. Based on everything we know, our vaccines and boosters remain our best line of defence, so it is more important than ever that people come forward when eligible to get boosted.
“Not only will today’s steps help us slow down the variant’s spread, but they will help us protect each other and the gains we have all worked so hard for.”
The measures will be reviewed in three weeks.
The new rule applies to:
All public transport, including taxis and private hire vehicles, and transport hubs (airports, rail and tram stations and terminals.
maritime ports and terminals, bus and coach stations and terminals)
Shops and supermarkets and generally places that offer goods or services for retail sale or hire, enclosed shopping centres and indoor markets.
Takeaways without space for consumption of food or drink on the premises.
Premises providing personal care and beauty treatments such as hair salons, barbers, nail salons, massage centres, tattoo and piercing studios.
Auction houses and retail galleries.
Banks, building societies, high-street solicitors and accountants, credit unions, short-term loan providers, savings clubs and money service businesses.
Estate and lettings agents and retail travel agents.
Masks must also be worn during driving lessons and driving tests.
All hospitality venues are exempt, including pubs, restaurants, cafes and canteens, bars, restaurants and bars in hotels or members’ clubs, and shisha bars.
Also exempt are photography studios, as well as premises – other than registered pharmacies – providing medical or dental services, audiology services, chiropody, chiropractic, osteopathic, optometry or other medical services including services relating to mental health.
People who are not wearing a face covering where they have to can be fined in form of a fixed penalty notice and ordered to pay £200, rising to £400 for the second such offence, and to £800 for the third, up to a maximum of £6,400 in the case of a sixth and subsequent fixed penalty notices.
The new requirement to wear a face covering in certain places can be enforced by a constable, a police community support officer, a TfL officer, staff of public transport operators, or any person designated by the secretary of state for the purposes of this regulation.
These people can direct a person to wear a face covering or direct that person to leave the relevant place and, where a person does not comply with a direction given to them by a constable, the constable may remove them from the relevant place.
Proceedings for an offence under these new regulations may be brought by the Crown Prosecution Service, Transport for London or any other person designated by the secretary of state for the purposes of this regulation.
All contacts of suspected Omicron cases must self-isolate, regardless
of their age or vaccination status. They will be contacted by NHS test and trace, Downing Street said.
The face mask mandate will expire at the end of 20 December 2021.
It doesn’t appear that any of the women from Selling Sunset will be migrating over to Selling the OC. Fans will likely be introduced to a brand new batch of real estate agents who know what they’re doing on the beachside.
We can still expect to see the familiar faces of Chrishell Stause, Christine Quinn, and Mary Fitzgerald in the upcoming fifth season of Selling Sunset.
WASHINGTON, Nov 29 (Reuters) – U.S. President Joe Biden urged Americans to wear masks indoors and in public places, as the administration braces for the new COVID-19 variant Omicron to appear in the country.
“Sooner or later we are going to see cases of this new variant here in the United States,” Biden said. “Please wear your mask when you’re indoors, in public settings around other people.”
Reporting by Alex Alper
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