The Government’s five tests are:
- Protect the NHS’s ability to cope. We must be confident that we are able to provide sufficient critical care and specialist treatment right across the UK
- See a sustained and consistent fall in the daily death rates from COVID-19 so we are confident that we have moved beyond the peak
- Reliable data from SAGE showing that the rate of infection is decreasing to manageable levels across the board
- Be confident that the range of operational challenges, including testing capacity and PPE, are in hand, with supply able to meet future demand
- Be confident that any adjustments to the current measures will not risk a second peak of infections that overwhelms the NHS
More Lockdown Easing Measures
A series of measures will be put in place in England from Monday 1 June in three core areas – schools, retail, and social contact.
Schools: Primary schools will welcome back children in Reception, Year 1 and Year 6 on 1 June, and nurseries and other early years settings will be reopened. On 15 June, secondary schools, sixth forms and colleges will begin to provide some face-to-face contact time for Year 10 and 12 and the equivalent groups in further education. This will help students prepare for exams next year, and we expect there to be around a quarter of these secondary students in at any point. The Prime Minister has also acknowledged that some schools may not be able to reopen immediately, and has committed the government to continuing to work with the sector to ensure any schools experiencing difficulties are able to open as soon as possible.
Shops: Thousands of high street shops, department stores and shopping centres will also begin to reopen in June as we restart the economy. Outdoor markets and car showrooms will be able to reopen from 1 June, provided they meet COVID-19 secure guidelines to protect shoppers and workers. We intend to open all other non-essential retail from 15 June, as long as the government’s five tests are still being met and COVID-19 secure guidelines are followed.
Test & Trace: The new NHS Test and Trace programme will ensure we keep making progress in easing the lockdown while continuing to keep the virus under control. The government will closely monitor the impact of the changes set out today and continue to follow the scientific advice to ensure the five tests continue to be met before we take any further steps. So far, the public have shown high levels of compliance and the Goverment are confident that this will continue as restrictions are relaxed, and that people will do the right thing to control the virus and save lives.
The police will continue to take the approach of engaging, explaining and encouraging individuals to follow the law. Where people do not follow the rules, the police will have the power to enforce these requirements as a last resort.