11 June 2020
Moving to Level 2 of our Safe Exit Framework is an important step forward for our community.
Nearly all businesses will be able to open and islanders will have access to more of the services and freedoms they enjoyed before the pandemic.
We are able to take this step because the medical advice tells us it is safe to do so. Of course, the wellbeing of islanders remains our overriding priority and Level 2 will enable us to strike a balance between necessary health precautions and providing more certainty for businesses - and more opportunities for people to get back to work.
To mitigate risks, there will be some new restrictions and guidelines for particular sectors.
From midnight tonight:
Jersey will be open for ‘staycations’. Detailed guidance has been provided to allow our hotels, B&Bs, self-catering accommodation, Jersey Heritage lets and campsites to welcome guests again.
I would encourage islanders to take advantage of this opportunity – not only will it provide a welcome rest and recuperation after lockdown, it will also be supporting our hospitality industry – which have been severely impacted by the pandemic.
Restaurants and cafes will now be able to offer meals in their indoor as well as their outdoor seated food areas – with physical distancing measures in place.
Alcoholic drinks may be sold with meals, but an alcoholic drinks-only service is not permitted, at this stage.
Dental practices will be able to resume routine care as well as urgent treatment. Counselling and mental health services, and regulated allied healthcare professions – including chiropractors, physiotherapists, opticians and dieticians – can also open for business.
In all these services we are requesting that priority continues to be given to those most in need.
People can visit their hairdressers, barbers, beauty and nail salons again. Piercing and tattoo parlours, laser and cosmetic clinics will also be able to reopen provided they follow the strict guidelines to keep customers safe.
There will welcome options for leisure activities across the island as Indoor venues such as libraries, museums, galleries, cinemas, theatres and arcades may now open, within guidelines.
The lockdown has highlighted the importance of sport and physical activity, so gyms will be able to open their doors again.
We are asking that indoor sports facilities are well ventilated and used for low intensity activities - owing to the risk of droplets spreading between people undertaking vigorous exercise in a confined space, even if they are well-spaced.
Higher intensity sports and fitness activities can be held outdoors, maintaining safe distance and following relevant guidelines. Indoor and outdoor swimming pools may open, but changing facilities are a higher risk environment and should remain closed.
So, Islanders are asked to ‘play and go’. This may require some additional planning and preparation but will allow access to these important facilities.
Public playgrounds, paddling pools, outdoor gyms and similar may also open - but you are strongly advised to clean equipment before and after use. All outdoor recreation may now open, subject to published guidelines including ensuring cleaning between uses.
Indoor businesses such as offices, warehouses, manufacturing and workshops are able to bring even more employees back to the workplace, beyond those simply considered essential.
We have also published updated guidance for work taking place outdoors and working in private homes. Cleaners, cooks, estate agents, internal building maintenance and home visits for hairdressing, for example, provided it can be done within the guidelines.
ALL businesses will have completed or updated their COVID-19 risk assessments and ensured that appropriate measures are in place before opening.
Where that activity takes place indoors, there will be greater requirements on businesses and the Islanders who use them.
You may notice changes that include being asked for your contact details, so that businesses can keep a record for contact tracing purposes.
You might be asked to wear protective equipment, such as a mask, or be served from behind a screen. These steps will help us move forward safely.
Looking forward, the target for the move to Level 1 is currently early July subject, of course, to careful monitoring of the health risks.
We are also looking closely at reducing the physical distancing requirement from 2 metres to 1 metre.
We all want to see the last few businesses open as soon as possible – to help retain islanders’ livelihoods and jobs and to start the island on its recovery.
This can only happen with your continued forbearance.
I would also like to thank those businesses opening from tomorrow for their fortitude and resilience and for the huge amount of help they have given to help and enable officials to produce all of the relevant guidelines on time for opening from tomorrow.
Can I also pay tribute to all of the businesses and employees that have either remained working on the frontline throughout the pandemic, such as food stores and those other businesses have been enabled to open at a previous levels with a special mention for all of our retailers, large and small, who have strived to provide access to their shops, goods and services under the most difficult of circumstances.
So please DO take advantage of the further opportunities and freedoms now available to all of us under Level 2.
Please do celebrate all that our local economy has to offer but please do so safely, to ensure that we continue to move forward, positively and confidently.