The coronavirus pandemic has shown us how our behaviour can make the difference between keeping us safe or putting ourselves and others in harm’s way.
From today, we are being told to take extra care in how we behave. We can no longer meet people from other households in groups of more than six. The ‘Rule of 6’ applies to all our social gatherings, whether outdoors, indoors or in private homes.
If our individual household or support bubble is made of more than six people, we are still able to gather together.
However, large groups of up to 30, that had been allowed, are now banned. The legal maximum is now six, and if you are caught breaking this new law you will be dealt with by the police. They have the powers to issue fines of £100, doubling for further breaches up to a maximum of £3,200.
We can carry on visiting COVID-secure venues such as restaurants, pubs and places of worship. These can still host larger numbers in total, but groups of up to six must not mix or form larger groups.
Dr Robyn Dewis, Director of Public Health at Derby City Council, is encouraging people to stay the course and has this advice:
“We need to be pragmatic and remember that every single contact we have increases our risk of contracting the virus. Keeping these contacts to as low a number as possible is ideal for us and it reduces our chances of catching the virus. But it also allows us to continue living our lives and having the opportunities to socialise with people, which is important for our mental and emotional wellbeing. The coming weeks will see many of us wanting to take advantage of festivals, outdoor activities, and eating out. We can enjoy ourselves as long as we remember to live by the ‘Rule of 6’.”
The Council is also in the planning stages, with the Department of Health and Social Care, to increase the availability of testing in the city. More details on this will be announced in the coming weeks.
To do the right thing for Derby and reduce the number of positive cases we all need to keep to this new law and continue:
- Keeping our distance – staying a safer 2 metres apart and try to limit the number of people we see, especially over short periods of time
- Wearing a face covering – wearing a face covering in indoor public spaces, unless we’re exempt
- Washing our hands – wash for 20 seconds using soap. Use sanitiser where this is not available
- Isolating and getting a test if we have symptoms – if we test positive we must continue to isolate and share information on our contacts with NHS Test and Trace
There are exemptions, including workplaces and educational establishments, and we can also arrange and attend weddings and funerals, with up to 30 people.
For more information on the new legislation and the exclusions visit the gov.uk website