Roadmap out of lockdown
Towards the end of February, the Government announced their roadmap out of lockdown. This four step plan provides for a gradual “unlocking” of business sectors and restrictions. Details of the different steps, their provisional introduction dates and the types of business which may reopen can be found on the Government’s Covid-19 Response – Spring 2021 website.
Rapid Covid-19 Testing
Dr Liz Robin, Director of Public Health for Cambridgeshire County Council & Peterborough City Council, is encouraging workplaces that have employees who are unable to work from home, and who are over the age of 18, to access free rapid Covid-19 testing which are now available across Cambridgeshire and Peterborough. Please see the attached letter from Dr Robin regarding rapid testing for workplaces.
Up to one in three people who are infected with Covid-19 have no symptoms and could be spreading the diseases without knowing it. Broadening testing to identify workers who are showing no symptoms will mean finding positive cases more quickly, which helps break chains of transmission.
There are six sites across Cambridgeshire and Peterborough specifically for rapid testing of workers who are not displaying any symptoms. These sites are at: Cambourne, Arbury, Huntingdon, Soham, Peterborough and Wisbech. Testing is available 8am to 8pm and people are urged to take a test twice a week. Staff are able to book onto any of these rapid testing sites by visiting the Cambridgeshire County Council website, where further information can also be found.
Alternatively, workplaces can enrol within a local rapid Covid-19 testing programme, organised by Cambridgeshire County Council, where the employer is provided with free tests for their employees for a fixed period of time. This programme of rapid Covid-19 testing would see the test completed at the workplace. For support in enrolling in the local rapid Covid-19 testing programme, or for further information, please email LFTWorkplace@cambridgeshire.gov.uk.
Workplaces are also able to register to order free rapid Covid-19 tests for their employees by visiting the Government website in relation to a national testing programme. If this is of interest to your business, you must register on or before 31 March 2021.
Working from home
Covid-19 is spread by social contact, and we know that we can reduce this by encouraging people to work from home, where they can. While many workplaces have very good Covid-19 safety measures, staff may still be exposed to the virus when travelling to and from work, or through informal social contact with colleagues – such as at lunch or in coffee breaks. To help contain the virus, the Government advises that anyone who can work from home should do so.
If your business has been instructed to close by law during lockdown, or you have been adversely affected, you may be eligible for some support through our grant schemes. For more information visit our business support webpages or contact our Business Grants Team by emailing BusinessGrants@scambs.gov.uk.
Working Safely During Coronavirus
The Government has published guidance for businesses to help them to operate safely during the Covid-19 pandemic. The sector specific guidance called Working Safely during Coronavirus may assist your business operation and/or reopening following the lockdown.
Covid-19 guidance changes rapidly and the latest announcements and guidance can be found on the Government website. Our South Cambridgeshire District Council website also provides useful information for businesses regarding Covid-19.
Reopening the High Streets
Our Reopening the High Streets Officers are visiting businesses across South Cambridgeshire offering advice, support and guidance to those wanting to reopen following the current lockdown. If you require assistance with reopening, please contact our Reopening the High Streets Team at: Reopening@scambs.gov.uk.