New restrictions in Kirklees – useful information

Late last night, the government announced new restrictions for 4 million people in the North of England, including everyone in Kirklees. We understand that local people will have many questions about the new rules. Here’s what we know so far:

What am I not allowed to do?

The main change in the rules is about visiting people in their homes or gardens. The new restrictions mean:

  • You cannot visit any other home or garden that isn’t your own.
  • You cannot have anyone visit your home or garden.

If you are part of a support bubble, you can continue to visit each other.

If you are going out (to a restaurant, pub or other indoor space) you must not go with anyone from outside your household. You cannot meet or interact indoors with people outside your household while you are out.

What is a support bubble?

A support bubble is strictly limited to one household and one other person who lives on their own. You can only be in one support bubble.

Can I still meet outside in public?

In line with the national guidance, you can continue to meet in groups of up to six people who you do not live with or who are not in your support bubble.

You can also meet people in groups of more than six people if everyone is exclusively from two households (anyone in the same support bubble counts as one household).

The council has already said it will not allow gatherings of more than 30 people outside.

What else am I not allowed to do?

You can’t visit anyone in their homes even if they don’t live in Kirklees. People can’t come to your home from outside Kirklees to visit you.

You can continue to do everything else that was allowed before yesterday: go to work, shops, pubs and restaurants. But you cannot do these things with people from outside your household.

Can my friends or family still visit to provide childcare?

You should not meet with people you don’t live with in their homes or gardens. Two households, or up to six people from multiple households, can still meet in outdoor public places (like parks) for childcare.

Where people from single adult households (people who live alone or single parents with dependent children aged under 18) have formed a support bubble with another household, they can continue to visit each other for childcare purposes. Parents and carers can continue to use registered child care provision, including childminders. They can also continue to employ nannies (please see guidance on working safely in other people’s homes.)

Can I still exercise with people from outside my household?

Yes. You can meet people in groups of six people for exercise outdoors. This group can be bigger if everyone is exclusively from two households (anyone in the same support bubble counts as one household).

What does this mean for sports clubs?

Sports clubs can continue to organise and play sport, following the latest Government guidance.

However, in Kirklees we are asking that organisers ensure that more than 30 attendees are not present. Local sports governing bodies and sports league secretaries will be contacted with guidance and advice on how to manage this.

We understand that for some people taking part in sport that their parents or carers may need to attend with them and our advice is that they social distance from people not from their household.

If you’re an organiser of any sporting activity or event, please contact us if you’d like further advice.

Is shielding going to be extended?

There are no plans to extend or reintroduce shielding. However, if you do feel as though you are vulnerable we would advise you to take necessary precautions to avoid contact with people not in your support bubble or household.

Do the restrictions apply to everyone?

Yes, everyone who lives anywhere in Kirklees and around 4 million people in the North of England. There are some exceptions for vulnerable people but they are not yet clear.

Why have the restrictions been introduced?

The government has decided that there is a risk that the virus is spreading quickly in parts of England. The moves are to try and stop the infection spreading between households.

Why do the restrictions cover parts of Kirklees where infection rates are low?

The government has decided where the restrictions should apply. They have taken an approach that many whole local authority areas should be included. They think that there is a danger that the virus is present in areas beyond the clusters we have seen over previous weeks. Other local authorities have recently seen increases in cases in areas where the virus have previously been low. They think that might also happen in Kirklees.

What are the rates of infection in Kirklees?

Last week’s data showed that the rates of infection in Kirklees were four times as high as the national average. This week’s data is likely to show a significant reduction in that rate. So we are currently in a different position to many of the local authorities affected. Nevertheless, the government believes the threat of increases in the rate are high and they have decided to take this action.

What has the council done to reduce infections?

As soon as we had the data from the government about infections, we have taken targeted action in the areas most affected. We have gone out into the community, delivered a public information campaign and worked with partners to get the messages out about staying safe and protecting our communities. The past week has seen a reduction in cases and we will carry on our work to get numbers down further.

What happens if I don’t follow the rules?

This could put your health and the health of others at risk. This could also result in an increase in rates in Kirklees and could risk putting us in a local lockdown.

The government has said it will give local authorities and police forces the powers to enforce these restrictions and more details on these will be set out when the regulations are published.

Can I still go to work?

Yes. There are no changes to work. But you must still follow the rules on social distancing.

If you are working in someone else’s home, you can continue to do that.

When do the restrictions come into force?

These restrictions are in force now.

When do the restrictions end?

We don’t know yet. Given our decreasing infection rates, we hope we can get our freedoms back quickly.

What can I do?

If we follow the rules, we will bring infections down. Continue to social distance, wash your hands, use a face covering and isolate as soon as you have symptoms. You can also call 119 to get a test.

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