We are all adjusting to the new normal to try and prevent the spread of coronavirus (COVID-19). Here we look at some of the ways that you can stay safe during this time. Read about when to wear face covering and how wear them safely, the government’s new website which supports people recovering from COVID-19 and the NHS Test and Trace service.
For more information about supporting during the COVID-19 pandemic, read our guidance here.
The UK government says that during coronavirus (COVID-19) they consider a face covering as something that covers the nose and mouth.
Currently in England, you must wear a face covering by law in the following places- unless you are exempt :
- public transport
- inside airports, rail and tram stations and terminals, maritime ports and terminals, bus and coach stations and terminals
- shops and supermarkets
- indoor shopping centres
- banks, building societies, and post offices .
You must put on your face covering before entering these places and keep it on until you leave.
On 8 th August you will be expected to wear face coverings in more places. These include:
- funeral directors
- premises providing professional, legal or financial services
- bingo halls
- concert halls
- museums, galleries, aquariums, indoor zoos or visitor farms, or other indoor tourist, heritage or cultural sites
- nail, beauty, hair salons and barbers – other than where necessary to remove for treatments
- massage centres
- public areas in hotels and hostels
- place of worship
- libraries and public reading rooms
- community centres
- social clubs
- tattoo and piercing parlours
- indoor entertainment venues (amusement arcades, funfairs, adventure activities e.g. laser quest, go-karting, escape rooms, heritage sites etc )
- storage and distribution facilities
- veterinary services
- auction houses.
You are also strongly encouraged to wear a face covering in other enclosed public spaces :
- in places where social distancing may be difficult
- in places where you come into contact with people you do not normally meet
- in NHS settings, including hospitals and primary or community care settings, such as GP surgeries
- in care homes.
Wearing a mask safely
It’s important that we use face coverings safely. Here are some tips to wearing a mask safety :
- Wash your hands before and after using a face covering
- Place the face covering over your mouth and nose
- Remove face coverings from your ears, do not touch the front
- Wash your face covering regularly
There are different types of face masks; you may choose to wear a surgical mask or you may choose to wear a cloth face covering.
This short video from the World Health Organisation provides information about how to wear a fabric mask safely.
The NHS is asking people to wear cloth face covering so that any surgical face masks can be reserved for health and care workers to protect against risk in their workplace.
Wearing a mask- understanding when you don’t need to wear a mask
The requirement to wear a face covering on TfL’s public transport and other indoor areas does not apply to:
- Children under the age of 11
- Employees of, or persons providing agreed services to, TfL
- Police constables (including British Transport Police officers) acting in the course of their duty
- Members or employees of the emergency services responding to an emergency.
You also do not need to wear a face covering if you have a good reason not to; such as:
- If you have a physical or mental illness or impairment, or a disability that means you cannot put on, wear or remove a face covering
- If putting on, wearing or removing a face covering would cause you severe distress
- If you are travelling with, or providing assistance to, someone who relies on lip reading to communicate
- If you are travelling to avoid injury or escape the risk of harm, and you do not have a face covering with you
- If you need to remove it during your journey to avoid harm or injury or the risk of harm or injury to yourself or others
- If you need to eat, drink, or take medication you can remove your face covering
- If you are asked to remove your face covering by a police officer or other official, for example to check your railcard .
For more information about wearing face coverings on London Transport, click on the link: https://tfl.gov.uk/campaign/face-coverings
Information on recovering from COVID19
If you have had symptoms of COVID 19, you may still be coming to terms with the impact the virus has had on both your body and mind.
These changes should get better over time, some may take longer than others, but there are things you can do to help.
Your COVID Recovery is an NHS website that helps you to understand what has happened and what you might expect as part of your recovery. Explore it here: https://www.yourcovidrecovery.nhs.uk/
NHS Test and Trace
The NHS Test and Trace service aims to find people who have some into close contact with those who are infected with coronavirus (COVID19).
If the NHS Test and Trace service thinks that you may have been in contact with someone who has COVID19, they will contact you by text, email or phone and ask you to give details of your recent close contacts.
Those calling from the NHS Test and Trace service will clearly identify themselves and say why they are calling.
Managing your feelings about these changes
You may have mixed feelings about these new changes. We want you to know that it’s OK to feel ambivalent. We have put together a list of tips on how you can manage your feelings about these changes:
- understand the new changes and how they may affect you
- feel prepared by planning ahead
- understand the facts- use information from Government sources to help you make decisions
- take some time for self-care
- acknowledge your feelings
- focus on the present.
For more support with managing your feelings at this time, look at our maintaining your mental health and wellbeing page.
Stuart Low Trust and the ‘new normal’
We take the health, wellbeing and safety of our participants, volunteers and staff extremely seriously. Stuart Low Trust is adhering to government guidelines and is communicating with our delivery partners regularly. We are presently developing an understanding of the steps that may need to be taken in order to move towards re-opening our activities.
We would like to hear from our participants to find their thoughts on our return to face-to-face activities. In particular, we want to know about what we can do to make people feel more comfortable and less anxious about attending our activities.
Members of the Stuart Low Trust community can share their views here: https://stuartlowtrust.typeform.com/to/BFpisk
You can read more about our response to the easing of lockdown.