Chamber Network Summary
Within a national, not regional, model, four main ‘steps’ were outlined for the reopening, each (provisionally) time tabled for 5 weeks after the earlier one.
STEP 4 (no earlier than 21 June)
- Nightclubs and larger events reopening
- A review of all Covid-19 measures will be undertaken, which will inform the decision of when the 1 meter rule and requirement of face coverings may be lifted
The indicative dates given are ‘earliest possible’ dates, and could change as the underlying data changes. At present, businesses will return under current health and hygiene requirements.
Progress through the Steps will not be automatic, and will depend on data on 4 measures: vaccination progress; vaccination reducing deaths and hospitalisation; infection rates relative to NHS capacity; and risks from new variants. Businesses will be given confirmation that the next step will be activated with at least one week’s notice. A key issue for business communities will be exactly how the measures will be tested, and clarity over progress towards these goals in near-real time would assist business planning considerably.
There will be separate reviews of various key issues, such as social distancing measures, which we do not anticipate getting tougher but only weaker for so long as the virus continues to recede; ‘vaccination certificates’; and international travel.
View the full Covid-19 Response Spring 2021: Chamber Network Summary
Coronavirus Support & Guidance – What you need to know
As the uncertainty around COVID-19 (coronavirus) continues to grow, the West and North Yorkshire Chamber of Commerce would like to reassure our members and partners that we are here to help. Below you will find the most up to date information to help guide you through this challenging time.
- The SEISS (Self-Employed Income Support Scheme) has been extended for the 4th time, allowing people who filed a tax return in 2019-2020 to claim for the first time.
- Changes to the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme. Workers across the United Kingdom will benefit from increased support with an extension of the furlough scheme until 30 September 2021.
- Claims for the Employment Income Support Scheme fourth grant are now open. You have until 1st June to make a claim.
- What to do if you’re self-employed and getting less work or no work. This guidance will clarify eligibility conditions for Universal Credit and New Style Employment and Support Allowance and to add Pension Credit, New Style Jobseeker’s Allowance and the Test and Trace Support Payment as other financial help that can be claimed. Guidance for people who are self-employed and getting less work or no work because of coronavirus (COVID-19)
- The YouTube video about how to make a Self-Employment Income Support Scheme claim has been updated.
- Military reservists will be able to access the government’s self employment scheme Reservists returning to civilian work eligible
UPDATE: You should not travel to red or amber list countries or territories. Check the green, amber and red lists.
UPDATE: A new COVID-19 variant is spreading in some parts of England. Find out what you should do.
UPDATE: From 17 May, you can socialise indoors in a group of up to 6 people or 2 households, including for overnight stays. Up to 30 people can meet outside. Pubs, theatres and other venues can open indoors. Hotels, hostels and B&Bs can open for people on holiday. Read the guidance on what you can do.
- The rules for entering England change depending on where you have travelled from outside the UK.
- People who live in England who have had a full vaccine course (2 doses), will be able to demonstrate their COVID-19 vaccination status for outbound international travel to countries where this is recognised.
- The Government will launch a new Pandemic Preparedness Partnership (PPP) to save lives from future diseases and prevent another global pandemic.
- Everyone in England will be able to access free, regular, rapid coronavirus (COVID-19) testing from 9 April, the government has announced.
- Guidance on shielding and protecting people defined on medical grounds as extremely vulnerable changed on 31 March.
- You must complete a travel declaration form if you are travelling abroad from England. You must state the reason for your travel on the form.
- Here is an explanation of the technology behind asymptomatic testing and the role these tests play in the national COVID-19 testing programme. Understanding lateral flow antigen testing for people without symptoms
- Kickstart Scheme – The employer guide PDF has been updated because you no longer need a minimum of 30 job placements to apply directly. Employers can choose to apply online themselves or through a Kickstart gateway already working with the scheme.
- If you’ve been offered Kickstart Scheme funding, you can use these resources to show your support for the scheme. Kickstart Scheme employer resources
- Travel advice: coronavirus (COVID-19) Under current UK COVID-19 restrictions, you must stay at home. You must not travel, including abroad, unless you have a legally permitted reason to do so. It is illegal to travel abroad for holidays and other leisure purposes.
- The Chamber have updated the Job Retention Scheme FAQs
- Here is a letter from BEIS Minister Scully to haulier firms on the new requirements for drivers to have a negative Covid test before travelling to ports. Costs of test will be met by government and businesses are encouraged to go through their local authority for the necessary equipment.
- Here is an overview of the approach to LFD testing in workplaces – Introduction to LFD Testing in Workplaces
- Here is some information about approved suppliers of private testing kits for coronavirus (COVID-19).
- Apprenticeship training and assessment can continue to be delivered under national restrictions and all local restriction tiers Guidance for apprentices, employers, training providers
- Here is a message to the housing industry from the Housing Secretary, Executive Chairman of the Home Builders Federation and Chief Executive of the Federation of Master Builders to the housing industry on continuing to work securely. A message to the housing industry on continuing to work securely
- Chancellor increases financial support for businesses and workers. The government has announced it will significantly increase the generosity and reach of its winter support schemes to ensure livelihoods and jobs across the UK continue to be protected in the difficult months to come, supporting jobs and helping to contain the virus.
- The Kickstart scheme is helping young people at risk of long term unemployment get into the job market by providing government funding for employers to create six-month job placements. Find someone to apply for a Kickstart Scheme grant on your behalf.
- The new NHS COVID-19 app, now available to download for free in England and Wales, is the fastest way to see if you’re at risk from coronavirus. Download the NHS COVID-19 app
- Further clarity has been made to the section ‘Staff in indoor settings’. Face coverings: when to wear one and how to make your own
- This is the Winter Economy Plan update in full. Winter Economy Plan
- Further clarity has been made to the section ‘Staff in indoor settings’. Face coverings: when to wear one and how to make your own
- Create a coronavirus NHS QR code for your venue. Use this service to create a QR code for display in your venue. Get visitors to scan the QR code when they arrive, using the NHS COVID-19 app. This is to help trace and stop the spread of coronavirus (COVID-19).
- Venues required by law to record contact details. Premises and venues across England must have a system in place to record contact details of their customers, visitors and staff in the latest move to break the chains of transmission of coronavirus.
- Companies House resumes voluntary strike off process. Temporary measures to suspend voluntary strike off action will be lifted from today (10 September 2020).
- Face coverings in education – This guidance has been updated to include new guidance on face coverings to support schools and colleges to return to a full attendance on 8 March.
- Guidance for businesses and organisations on how to recognise, contain and report incidents of coronavirus (COVID-19) has been updated by the government.
- Guidance for employees and employers on self-isolating after returning to the UK. Self-isolating after returning to the UK: your employment rights
- A new government scheme has been launched to support English universities at risk of insolvency. Government scheme to help universities in financial difficulties
- New package of support to help employers and Further Education (FE) providers deliver high-quality industry placements has been launched. New package of support for T Level industry placements
- The Small Business Commissioner can investigate complaints from small businesses (a business with less than 50 employees) and their larger client (a business with more than 50 employees) and make non legally binding recommendations to resolve a dispute. Ensuring businesses continue to be paid promptly. The Office of the Small Business Commissioner can also assist small businesses by checking contracts, providing advice on getting invoices right and signposting them to existing support and dispute resolution services.
- The Manufacturing Growth Programme has been extended until December 2022
- The guidance regarding exporting PPE has been updated as companies no longer need to apply for an export licence to export PPE. Guidance for UK businesses trading internationally.
- Major changes to insolvency law come into force. The Corporate Insolvency and Governance Act has received Royal Assent and came into force on 26 June 2020.
- Guidance for DCMS sectors in relation to coronavirus had been published. Information for DCMS sectors in response to coronavirus
- Sending your forms to Companies House during the coronavirus outbreak. The latest release of the service allows users to upload their change of constitution forms.
- Employers that want to reopen their business have a legal responsibility to protect their employees and other people on site. The UK government has developed a new tool and guidance for businesses to check what their workplace needs to do to keep people safe.
- Government has published a code of practice to encourage commercial tenants and landlords to work together to protect viable businesses. Code of practice for the commercial property sector
- How to treat certain expenses and benefits provided to employees during coronavirus. Find out about taxable expenses and benefits when they are paid to employees and how to report them to HMRC.
- Department for Transport issue an infographic on safe return to work on the transport network
- Safer travel and working principles for airports and aviation operators – safer aviation guidance for operators
- Business Representative Organisations and Trade Associations are providing coronavirus related support for specific sectors. Coronavirus support from Business Representative Organisations and Trade Associations
- Companies House – As an emergency response to coronavirus (COVID-19), we’ve developed a temporary online service to upload a number of completed forms and send them to Companies House digitally. Sending your forms to Companies House
- You must wear a face covering on public transport. Staying safe outside your home
- All staff in hospitals in England will be provided with surgical masks which they will be expected to wear from 15 June. All visitors and outpatients must wear face coverings at all times. Face masks and coverings to be worn by all NHS hospital staff and visitors
- Guidance on how OPSS is supporting businesses and local authorities and protecting consumers during the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic. OPSS coronavirus (COVID-19) guidance for business and local authorities
- NHS Test and Trace workplace guidance. Under the new NHS Test and Trace service, anyone who tests positive for Coronavirus in England will will need to share information about their recent interactions.
- Government introduces legislation to relieve burden on businesses and support economic recovery. The government has introduced the Corporate Insolvency and Governance Bill in Parliament.FCLBIS
- Updated information on symptoms COVID-19: guidance for employees, employers and businesses
- Clarification added on the guidance for the freight transport industry on international travel following government advice for British nationals. Coronavirus (COVID-19): advice for the freight transport industry
- Announcing new safer travel guidance for members of the public and safer transport guidance for operators. New transport guidance for passengers and operators has been announced
- The UK Government’s COVID-19 recovery strategy. The strategy sets out a cautious roadmap to easing existing measures in a safe and measured way, subject to successfully controlling the virus and being able to monitor and react to its spread.
- Frequently asked questions on what you can and can’t do during the coronavirus outbreak. Coronavirus outbreak FAQs: what you can and can’t do
- The Skills Toolkit offers free digital and numeracy courses to build your skills
- Vital routes for supplies and people have been protected today through a coronavirus support package to keep the flow of goods and services running smoothly in and out of the UK, and around the country, throughout the pandemic. Action will protect the transport links the country relies on
- Manufacture of Coronavirus testing capacity and testing kits. The UK government is requesting industry involvement in the manufacture of Coronavirus testing capacity and testing kits. Businesses who meet this specification should review the guidance on helping the government increase testing capacity and register here
- Annual inspection waiver for tank vehicles. Notice allowing tank vehicles, with extended roadworthiness test certificates, to remain in service and on our roads without a valid ADR 1(C) certificate.
- The Office of the Regulator of Community Interest Companies (CICs) has robust plans in place to maintain services for CICs and protect the welfare of employees during the Coronavirus (COVID-19) Guidance for Community Interest Companies (CICs)
- Chancellor waives import taxes on vital medical equipment including ventilators, coronavirus testing kits and protective clothing. Chancellor waives duties and VAT on vital medical imports
- Can you help? Offer coronavirus (COVID-19) support from your business Use this service to tell us how your business might be able to help with the response to coronavirus.
- Companies House: guidance if Coronavirus has affected your company and you need more time to file your accounts.
All Chamber members have the benefit of Chamber HR – access 24/7 to online HR support including templates for policies and guidance
- Ventilation and air conditioning during the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.
- Coronavirus (COVID-19): right to work checks – The temporary adjustments introduced because of coronavirus end on 16 May 2021.
- Guidance for the public o the mental health and wellbeing aspects of coronavirus (COVID-19)Updated as the temporary adjustments introduced because of coronavirus end on 16 May 2021.
- Here is an updated lists and information about approved suppliers of private testing kits for coronavirus (COVID-19).
- Information and support for parents and carers of children who are learning at home. Supporting your children’s remote education during coronavirus (COVID-19)
- Information has been added to the Kickstart Scheme ‘Find someone to apply for a Kickstart Scheme grant on your behalf’ is now added.
- Warning that thermal cameras and other such “temperature screening” products, some of which make direct claims to screen for COVID-19, are not a reliable way to detect if people have the virus. MHRA say don’t rely on temperature screening products for detection of coronavirus.
- Military reservists returning to work in the coming months will be eligible for the job retention scheme Reservists returning to civilian work eligible
- People on paternity and maternity leave who return to work in the coming months will be eligible for the government’s furlough scheme. Parents returning to work after extended leave eligible for furlough
- The guidance for employers about multiple coronavirus outbreaks in the workplace has been added. Guidance on the NHS test and trace service for employers, businesses and workers.
- Check which employees you can put on furlough to use the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme
- NCSC has published guidance to support businesses moving from physical to digital delivery in response to Covid-19. Security questions to ask your IT service providers during the coronavirus lockdown
- The Information Commissioner’s Office has published guidance covering how employers should handle data if they decide to test employees for Covid-19. ICO guidance on workplace Covid-19 testing
- Furloughed workers planning to take paid parental or adoption leave will be entitled to pay based on their usual earnings rather than a furloughed pay rate. Furloughed workers to receive full parental leave entitlement
- Free impartial support is being offered to help businesses recruit quickly to keep up with the demands of Covid-19, support businesses who have employees at risk of or facing redundancy and to help individuals find new employment opportunities. Here are details for business support and individuals
- Guidance on social distancing in the workplace Advice for employers on social distancing during coronavirus (COVID-19)
- New legislation making major changes to existing employment regulations came into force on Monday 6 April 2020 Employment law changes
- Advice and support while self-isolating or working from home can be found here Coronavirus and your wellbeing
- For those with employees who need to stay home with confirmed or possible Coronavirus infection, guidance can be found here Stay at home guidance
All Chamber members have access to Chamber Finance Finder. Simply register for a free account, provide the relevant information, and within minutes you’ll be matched to all available finance opportunities on the market, including the Coronavirus Business Interruption Loan Scheme (CBILS) and Bounce Back Loan Scheme (BBLS). Check your eligibility for these and other COVID-19 funding solutions and track your progress via the online portal find out more information here
- New calculation example added for calculating wages for different types of pension scheme (3.18) to Find examples to help you calculate your employees’ wages
- A couple of sections have been updated in the document Steps to take before calculating your claim using the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme
- Job Retention Scheme – A Step-by-step guide has been developed to reflect the recent changes to the scheme, and a new key dates guide has also been published. The Job Retention Scheme has been extended to the 30 September 2021.
- Deferral of VAT payments due to coronavirus New payment scheme will be available from 20 March 2021.
- Check if you can claim for your employees’ wages through the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme
- The Coronavirus Statutory Sick Pay Rebate Scheme has been updated with notes on shielding
- The Bounce Back Loan scheme application deadline has now ended.
- People in England will be required by law to self-isolate if they test positive or are contacted by NHS Test and Trace. New legal duty to self-isolate comes into force
- The templates used for submitting a claim for 100 or more employees have been updated. Employers must now include if an employee has returned from statutory leave before being put on furlough.
- If you’ve been offered Kickstart Scheme funding, you can use these resources to show your support for the scheme. You can check here if you are able to apply for the Kickstart Scheme funding.
- New law to ensure furloughed employees receive full redundancy payments is introduced
- Find out how to pay all or some of your grant back if you’ve over claimed through the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme. Pay Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme grants back
- How to apply for breathing space to consider a rescue plan for your company, under measures to support companies and other types of business in financial difficulty. Applying for a moratorium under the Corporate Insolvency and Governance Act 2020
- The Small Charities Challenge Fund (SCCF) is open for grants of up to £50,000 for the very best small British development charities tackling coronavirus. Deadline for applications is 25 March 2021
- The Cabinet Office have published a tool for businesses to ascertain what support is available to them. Find coronavirus financial support for your business
- Find out what equipment, services or supplies are taxable if your employees are working from home due to coronavirus Check which expenses are taxable if your employee works from home due to coronavirus
- HMRC have produced guidance on temporary changes to the use and supply of denatured alcohol and duty-free spirits, to help businesses who produce hand sanitiser and gel
- Insurers know this is an incredibly difficult time for families and businesses as people seek to make the right decisions for their own health and that of their family. The Association of Business Insurers (ABI) has provided guidance and answers to common questions. If you are unsure what your policy covers you for then check with your insurer or insurance broker.
- The government have issued the following guidance Business rates: expanded retail discount – guidance
- In response to extensive BRC pressure and widespread consumer demand, the contactless limit for in-store card transactions will increase from £30 to £45. This is being introduced as a measure in response to the coronavirus epidemic, to reduce the need for physical contact with PIN-Entry Devices (PEDs) at points of sale.
- Commercial tenants who cannot pay their rent because of coronavirus will be protected from eviction. Commercial tenants unable to pay rent because of coronavirus will be protected from eviction. Measures support ongoing conversations between landlords and tenants about voluntary arrangements. Latest measure builds on the unprecedented package of support for businesses already announced
If you have any concerns or would like to ask our professional team a question please contact contact our team
Our phone lines are open and we are on hand to answer any questions you may have 01274 230049
HAVE YOUR SAY: As a chamber network we have answered a number of questions around coronavirus, these can be found here If you have a question that you would like answered about these issues or any other Coronavirus support announced by the government, please email our policy team
Working Safely at the West and North Yorkshire Chamber during the Covid 19 pandemic – West and North Yorkshire Chamber Covid-19 Office Risk Assessment