UK Reopens, But Businesses Lift Restrictions Slower


After 16 long months, British government lifted almost all pandemic restrictions UK-wide on Monday, including work-from-home guidance.

But when the so-called Freedom Day arrives, the nation declares about 50,000 new cases of coronavirus One day in a population of about two-thirds fully vaccinated. And now apingdemicIt’s causing staff shortages across all industries, with hundreds of thousands of people being pinged by the National Health Service’s track and trace app and told to self-isolate for being near someone who has tested positive.

Many large companies are wary of reopening rather than a crowd of workers returning to their offices, as the government says there should be “personal and corporate responsibility” over some of the measures. By 10am on Monday, travel on the London Underground was 38 percent of normal demand, no higher than during the same period last week, and the vast majority of people were still wearing masks.

For this reason, most employers voluntarily return to the office, mandate the wearing of masks from desks, and limit office capacities to avoid crowds. For example, bank of england Beginning in September, he asks staff to return only once a week. But on Monday some policies were relaxed within the central bank – restrictions on elevator use were eased and gaps between desks will be removed.

Masks are still required in JPMorgan Chase’s London offices, common areas and meeting rooms, which are typically home to 12,000 employees, social distancing indicators are still marked around buildings and capacity is limited at 50 percent. The biggest change on Monday is that employees from any team are allowed to return to their offices if they wish; this has recently increased slightly by around 30 percent, but is still well below capacity. Over the summer, the bank plans to gradually increase the limit.

In the City of London, the capital’s main financial district, the health and safety measures at Goldman Sachs’ 826,000 square foot European headquarters remain the same. This means that workers must wear a mask when they are not sitting at their desks and continue to participate in the onsite testing program. Social distancing will reduce the normal capacity of the office. Recently, on average, about 30 percent to 40 percent of the bank’s 65,000 employees are in the office.

Goldman Sachs is also tracking vaccination rates from staff surveys of volunteers, which have shown a “significant upward trajectory” since June, according to an internal memo.

“We will continue to monitor local case rates and public health safety guidance and will update our in-office protocols as appropriate,” said Richard Gnodde, CEO of Goldman Sachs International.

At McKinsey & Company’s London office, masks will be required only in busy areas from Monday, the one-way system around the building will be abandoned, there will be no limits on how many people can use a meeting room, and staff has gained. They don’t have to have their fire checked when entering the building. However, there is no obligation to return to the office.

Even Prime Minister Boris Johnson will work from home on Freedom Day as he has been pinged by the National Health Service for 10 days of self-isolation.


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