Guidance

This information was last checked 27 July 2020.

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The UK Government’s COVID-19 recovery strategy

Our plan to rebuild: The UK Government’s COVID-19 recovery strategy has been published, outlining the UK Government’s plan for rebuilding and recovering from the coronavirus pandemic. The roadmap to lift restrictions step-by-step will be of particular interest to businesses and employers.

Businesses reopening

The government has guides which cover a range of different types of work. Many businesses operate more than one type of workplace, such as an office, factory and fleet of vehicles. You may need to use more than one of these guides as you think through what you need to do to keep people safe. Further guidance will be published as more businesses are able to reopen.

Check if your business can open

In addition to the other specific business guidance already published, the Government has recently issued business guidance for Performing Arts, Close Contact Services, Hotels and Other Guest Accommodation, Heritage Locations and The Visitor Economy. There is also guidance for people who work in grassroots sport and gym/leisure facilities.

The Chartered Institute of Environmental Health (CIEH) has also issued guidance for Salons and similar businesses to support them re-opening, and in relation to Legionnaires’ disease and re-opening safely. The link to the CIEH “Reopening salons and spas following lockdown: reducing risks of COVID-19 and other considerations” can be found on the CIEH website. You can also find the link to the “Legionnaires’ disease: lockdown risks and reopening safely" on their website. 

The Office of Product Safety and Standards (part of BEIS) has also issued guidance to businesses and Local Authorities. 

Please read the Fire Safety advice for reopening your business.

The Government has developed a tool to help businesses in England to reopen safely during coronavirus.

Advice for businesses who may be reopening

South Cambridgeshire District Council has established a new dedicated ‘Reopening businesses’ webpage which provides to help business with practical advice regarding the reopening of a business which had previously been required to close during the Coronavirus emergency period. The page covers:

  • Cleaning and disinfection (non-healthcare settings)
  • Coronavirus checklists
  • Personal hygiene
  • Re-opening checks
  • Signage
  • Social distancing
  • Staff illness
  • Waste

Adapting food and other businesses

The Food Standards Agency has published guidance on reopening and adapting food businesses. This aims to provide a practical framework to identify what businesses need to do to continue, adapt, or restart operations during the COVID-19 pandemic. It includes the hygiene processes and requirements that must be followed to safely operate a food business. The guidance is split into the following areas: farming and agriculture, food manufacturers, restaurants and takeaways.

Trading Standards, Environmental Health and Licensing teams across Cambridgeshire and Peterborough have worked together to provide some advice on the many compliance challenges businesses are facing in having to rapidly respond to Covid-19. They want businesses to feel confident in taking these major steps to diversify their business. Their advice ranges from what you need to consider when moving into food delivery or takeaway activities to how you can manage changing ingredients of your products due to supply chain issues.

Guidance for food businesses on coronavirus is available on the Government's website.

Staying alert and safe (social distancing) guidance

There is guidance on social distancing which includes information on businesses and venues and going to work.

Test and trace

Businesses in certain sectors should collect details and maintain records of staff, customers and visitors on their premises to support NHS Test and Trace.

Workplace guidance on the NHS test and trace service for employers, businesses and workers has been published by Government.

Public Health England have published a customer logging toolkit to support the re-opening of many businesses. It includes:

  • Guidance on maintaining records of staff, customers and visitors to support NHS Test and Trace;
  • Frequently Asked Questions on collecting and maintaining records; and
  • A Privacy Notice template.

Transport and travel

The Government's transport and travel hub brings together information for people using transport or working in the transport sector during the Coronavirus outbreak. This includes updated guidance for freight transport industry on travelling internationally, guidance for passengers on how to travel safely and safer transport guidance for operators. There are new rules on entering or returning to the UK.

Coronavirus: safer public places – urban centres and green spaces

Guidance has been issued for the owners and operators of urban centres and green spaces to help social distancing. This guidance applies in England only.

Personal Protective Equipment

government hub contains guidance on personal protective equipment (PPE), and infection prevention and control (IPC) including the cleaning of environments in the workplace and other non-healthcare settings. 

The Government has issued reminders that masks, gloves or other personal protective equipment (PPE) should not be put in the recycling. They cannot be recycled. Throw them in the bin instead. If you have Coronavirus symptoms or live with someone who does, you need to take extra precautions before throwing away your PPE.

There is guidance on the different regulations which apply to devices and equipment being used to help prevent Coronavirus, including hand gels and PPE.

The Office for Product Safety and Standards (OPSS) has a range of guidance documents on manufacturing PPE.

Keeping businesses safe 

Guidance is available from the Centre for the Protection of National Infrastructure (CPNI) for businesses on managing security risks during the pandemic. The CPNI has drawn together important security considerations for businesses in financial distress, including:

  • Returning to the workplace
  • Protective security and managing risks
  • Securing your people
  • Physical security and guarding

The Cambridgeshire Fire and Rescue Service has published advice on keeping businesses safe from fire during the Coronavirus crisis including where there is lone working or where buildings are not in use.

Coronavirus and mental health at work

Acas has released guidance and resources to help employers and employees cope in these challenging times. 

Sector guidance

The Government has issued guidance on home buying and selling including advice to the property industry and to social landlords.

There is also guidance on meeting the regulatory requirement to secure a valid Energy Performance Certificate on marketing a property during the Coronavirus outbreak.

There is guidance for the public, providers of outdoor sport facilities, elite athletes, personal trainers and coaches on the phased return of sport and recreation.

The Government has drawn together information for the adult social care sector on responding to the coronavirus pandemic.

All the guidance and advice about coronavirus in educational settings for staff, parents and carers, pupils and students is available on the Government’s website.

The latest information for farmers, landowners and rural businesses has also been drawn together. Advice for seasonal agricultural workers coming to England to work on farms and their employers has been published

The Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency has regularly updated guidance for industry, healthcare professionals and patients.

Additional industry guidance from Government includes:

The Government has also provided a list of Business Representative Organisations and Trade Associations that you can speak to for advice. Sector specific guidance and Q&A are included on the websites of many of their websites, and many of them are happy to hear from non-members and members alike.

Protection from eviction

The Government has announced that commercial tenants who cannot pay their rent because of Coronavirus will temporarily be protected from eviction.  

Insolvency law amended to help companies keep trading

The Business Secretary has announced he will make changes to enable UK companies undergoing a rescue or restructure process to continue trading, giving them breathing space that could help them avoid insolvency.

The proposals will also include key safeguards for creditors and suppliers to ensure they are paid. The Insolvency Act will be temporarily suspended specifically to give confidence to directors to continue trading without the threat of personal liability, should the company ultimately fall into insolvency.

Other Government guidance

The Government is relaxing a number of rules in response to the Coronavirus crisis including:

To help employers understand their legal obligations, there is new guidance that provides an explanation of how holiday entitlement and pay operate during the coronavirus pandemic, where it differs from the standard holiday entitlement and pay guidance.

There is also advice for UK visa applicants and temporary UK residents and for apprentices, employers, training providers and assessment organisations about changes to apprenticeships due to coronavirus. 

The Government’s guidance for British people travelling overseas during the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic has been updated.

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