The news everyone was waiting for has finally arrived as Prime Minister Boris Johnson announced that plan B measures are in fact coming to an end in the country.
Plan B scrapped
During a statement made in the House of Commons on 19 January, Johnson applauded the government’s efforts at containing the spread of the highly contagious Omicron variant without resorting to drastic measures. He also mentioned that the latest Office for National Statistics data revealed that the infection levels were falling in England. He added:
While there are some places where cases are likely to continue rising, including in primary schools, our scientists believe that it is likely that the Omicron wave has now peaked nationally.
Given all these factors, along with the success of the booster campaign, authorities made the decision to allow plan B restrictions ‘to expire.’
What does this mean for the public?
On Thursday 27 January, plan A will be officially reinstated in the country but starting tomorrow people will no longer have to follow the work from home guidance. Face masks inside classrooms will also be scrapped on the same day.
From next week, COVID certification passes will not be a legal requirement but organisations can choose to use it voluntarily. Additionally, people will not be obligated to wear a face covering in any setting. The government is, however, suggesting that people continue to cover their faces when they’re in crowded spaces.
Although the scrapping of plan B is a sign that things are heading in the right direction, the Prime Minister is still urging people to stay cautious and follow government-recommended advice especially considered that the Omicron variant is not one to be taken lightly.
While the UK is not completely out of the dark yet, he reassured MPs that the UK is in far better position that it was before. He concluded:
This week the World Health Organisation said that while the global situation remains challenging, the United Kingdom can start to see the light at the end of the tunnel. This is no accident of history.