England Plans to Lift Most Coronavirus-Related Restrictions, Including Mask Mandate

By Kurt Stolz on 6 July 2021
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Prime Minister Boris Johnson announced that his government will lift most remaining coronavirus restrictions in England in July.  The prime minister said he would leave it up to individuals to determine whether they will continue to don face masks on public transit including the London Underground and buses and in other confined spaces.

At an evening news conference from No. 10 Downing St., Johnson said people are ready to move beyond the long series of lockdowns, and move from a public health strategy that relied on “government legal diktat” to one based on “personal responsibility.”

The move comes as the India, or Delta, variant of the virus continues to infect individuals in the country.  Britain reported 27,334 new cases on Monday and 178,128 over the course of last week, a 53% increase over the prior week.

Transportation authorities such as Transport for London could still require its passengers to wear masks, however.

Johnson cautioned that the reopening is not a signal that things are returning to the pre-pandemic norm.

“I want to stress … that this pandemic is far from over,” he said, predicting that cases could hit 50,000 a day by July 19, the target date to lift restrictions. “We must reconcile ourselves, sadly, to more deaths from Covid.”

The opposition Labor Party disagreed with Johnson’s stance.

Keir Starmer, the party’s leader, said the move was “reckless.”

“A balanced approach, a proper plan, would say keep key protections,” he said. “One of them would be masks in enclosed places and on public transport – that’s a common-sense position.”

(Photo: Accura Media Group)

Accura News

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