Sajid Javid says plan for ‘normal’ Christmas despite fear over new Covid variant

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Sajid Javid, Health Secretary, said that the Government is ‘nowhere close’ to imposing new restrictions such as working from home. He also stated that masks will be required in shops and public transport starting Tuesday

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Omicron: Sajid javid responds to Christmas lockdown fears

People should keep planning for Christmas as normal. The UK is not. “nowhere near”Sajid Javid said that further restrictions will be placed on lockdown.

After two Omicron cases in England, the Health Secretary attempted to calm fears about the new Omicron variant.

Mr Javid announced that masks would be compulsory in shops and public transport beginning Tuesday in England. International arrivals were instructed to undergo PCR tests and then isolate until they receive their results.

All contacts with Omicron-related cases will be required to isolate for ten days, even double-jabbed. Because of the possibility that the new strain might be able evade vaccines,

Javid stated that the Government hopes these changes will be made. “temporary”They also suggested that people plan for Christmas. “normal”.

On Sunday, he spoke to Sky’s Trevor Phillips: “I think it’s fair to say that the nature of this pandemic is it would be irresponsible to make guarantees.

“Concerning Christmas, I believe that people should carry on with their Christmas plans as usual.

“I think it’s going to be a great Christmas.”

When asked if the government would allow working from home or social distancing, he replied: “We know now those types of measures do carry a very heavy price, both economically, socially, in terms of non-Covid health outcomes such as impact on mental health.

“If one were to make such decisions, they would need to be made very carefully. We are not there yet.”

The Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation (JCVI) has been asked to look at extending the booster programme to under-40s, with advice expected within the next few days.

Boris Johnson set out the changes at a hastily-arranged Downing Street press conference on Saturday but he was criticised for being too vague on the details.

The PM has resisted imposing “plan B” of the Government’s Covid winter plan, which also includes ordering people to work from home if possible and vaccine passports.

Shadow Foreign Secretary Lisa Nandy said the Government needs to “tighten up” travel restrictions.

She said questions remain around the scientific advice provided on mask wearing, the “Very little is done to improve ventilation in public buildings” and questions on travel restrictions.

Ms Nandy said: “The Government states that everyone must undergo a PCR testing on their second day back in the UK. However, they don’t recommend pre-departure tests to ensure people are ready for flight.

“There’s no advice for people about travelling back from the airport on public transport and there are very few checks on the PCR tests that are done. So, these are all things that for months the Government has been warned about.”