Lockdown roadmap: Calderdale health chief issues warning as some restrictions are lifted

We all still have a part to play in protecting ourselves and each other from COVID-19 - that is the message from Calderdale's health chief.

By Ian Hirst
Monday, 29th March 2021, 11:00 am
Updated Monday, 29th March 2021, 11:02 am

Infection rates have fallen and are now stable in Calderdale but are still too high according to Deborah Harkins, Calderdale Council’s Director of Public Health.

“It’s really positive that we can now reunite with our loved ones in the great Calderdale outdoors and enjoy the better weather together after many months of missing each other," she said.

“The easing of some restrictions brings us great hope for brighter days ahead, but we still all have a part to play in reducing the spread of COVID-19, which is still in our local communities at a rate that remains high. All of the local cases are now the Kent new variant, which spreads more easily, and because of this, many lockdown restrictions remain in place and it’s important that we keep following the rules.

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Some lockdown restrictions have been lifted today

“We should do everything we can to stay safe when meeting each other – staying out in the open air, keeping two metres apart at all times, washing our hands and minimising the amount of social gatherings and the number of people we meet wherever possible.

“Although more and more people are being vaccinated, it’s still vital to follow the public health advice that has become so familiar to us all, and to keep doing the three big things – limit contact with other people, wear a face covering and self-isolate if necessary. This is especially important to protect those who haven’t yet had their vaccine.”

From today (Monday March 29), some limited changes to the national lockdown have come into place across England, as part of Step 1 of the Government’s roadmap.

The ‘stay at home’ rule has been lifted, but people should keep working from home if they can, and continue to minimise travel where possible.

People can now meet up in limited numbers outdoors..

People still cannot mix with other households indoors, but can gather with either two households or up to a maximum of six people outside, including in private gardens.

Nationally, the careful reopening of outdoor sports and leisure facilities is now possible under Government guidelines, increasing the options for outdoor exercise and recreation. Calderdale Council is keeping its services under review in line with this and will only reopen facilities when it is safe to do so.

Partnership work continues across Calderdale to help control COVID-19, such as engaging with and supporting communities, particularly in areas with high infection rates; increasing and improving access to testing; ensuring that those most at risk from COVID-19 are offered a vaccine; carrying out local contact tracing; supporting people to enable them to self-isolate; engaging with businesses and helping them to be COVID-secure; and enforcing COVID-19 restrictions where necessary.