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In the latest move to tackle the spread of the coronavirus, the government has implemented a period of lockdown that is set to last for at least three weeks.

The clear message from the government seems clear: stay at home. Available on the government website, guidance instructs that individuals are now not to leave their home unless in the following four circumstances:

  • shopping for basic necessities (food and medical supplies)
  • one form of exercise a day
  • any medical need
  • travelling to and from essential work.

Certain businesses have also been told that they must close. Although a full list is available on the government website, this includes the following:

  • all non-essential retail stores
  • libraries and community centres
  • communal places within parks
  • places of worship
  • places of leisure including boarding houses for commercial/leisure use, aside from permanent residents and key worker buildings.

Organisations not on this list can remain open for now, however guidance remains that all staff should be permitted to work from home if this is a possibility.

For guidance on homeworking, please refer to our ‘how to’ guide and our model homeworking agreement.

For guidance on laying-off staff during this time, please refer to our in depth employment law section.

For guidance on making staff redundant during this time, please refer to our employment law section.

For information on the new government Job Retention Scheme, which can offer an alternative to lay-offs and redundancy, please refer to our detailed article.