Premier Boris Johnson said the system was designed to “simplify and standardize” a confusing patchwork of local regulations about what residents can and cannot do.
The British government announced a plan to divide England at three risk levels virus, in an attempt to stem a spike in cases. It placed the northern city of Liverpool under the highest risk category, meaning its bars, gyms and gambling shops will close again.
Prime Minister Boris Johnson said the three-tier system was designed to “simplify and normalize” a confusing patchwork of local norms about what residents can and cannot do. Johnson noted that stores, schools and universities would remain open in all regions.
He told lawmakers in the House of Commons that the goal is to save lives and prevent hospitals from being overwhelmed again. without “paralyzing our lives and our society” with a new confinement at the national level.
However, bars, restaurants and other businesses are rejecting the new measures, claiming they are not to blame for the rise in infections.
After registering a decline during the summer, coronavirus cases are on the rise in Britain as winter approaches. North West and North East England they are reporting the most marked rallies.
Liverpool has one of the most serious outbreaks in the country, with more than 600 cases per 100,000 inhabitants, even more than the European cities of Madrid and Brussels, which have been greatly affected by the second wave of the virus.
Under the new measures, areas in England will be classified as medium, high or very high risk and will have to implement the restrictions according to its severity.
Areas at the lowest level will follow current restrictions, including that bars and restaurants must close at 10 p.m. and a ban on gatherings of more than six people. In higher risk areas, meetings between people from different homes are prohibited.
The ‘very high’ risk level includes restrictions such as closing bars and, if the local authorities wish, other establishments such as gyms and casinos.
Liverpool was the only area placed in the top flight on Monday, but Johnson said authorities continue to speak to other local leaders across the north of England.
Under the new measures, bars, gyms, recreation centers, sportsbooks and casinos in Liverpool will have to close from Wednesday.