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What to do if you have an outbreak

Hampshire County Council is leading the Local Outbreak Control Planning and together with District Council Chief Executives and Environmental Health Officers and have set up a business information page which aims to support businesses in Hampshire respond to a case or outbreak of coronavirus.  The page includes:

  • what to do if you have a confirmed case(s) or an outbreak
  • how to report an outbreak to your local health protection team
  • a communications toolkit for smaller businesses who may not have access to this resource.
There is also a helpful flowchart explaining what to do if a member of staff,  customers, visitors or suppliers report symptoms or have tested positive for COVID-19. You can download the guide here.

Action cards are available for the following business and local community settings:

Workplaces

Retail, Hair and Beauty

Food and hospitality

Leisure and tourism

Covid-19 Latest Update

The situation with coronavirus, officially Covid-19, is changing daily. The future situation is unknown but there are resources and advice available which will change as the situation changes.

Updated 23rd September

  • Business conferences, exhibitions and large sporting events will not be reopened from 1 October.

From 28th September

  • A maximum of 15 people may attend weddings, while 30 may attend funerals.

From 24th September 

  • Pubs, bars and restaurants must operate table-service only, except for takeaways
  • Hospitality venues must close at 10pm (which means closing, not last orders). The same will apply to takeaways, although deliveries can continue
  • Retail staff will have to wear face coverings as will and staff and customers in indoor hospitality, except when seated at a table to eat or drink
  • Covid-secure guidelines will become legal obligations in retail, leisure, tourism and other sectors.
  • Visit the government webpage for the Covid-19 Secure guidelines  for the following sectors:
    • Close contact services
    • Construction and other outdoor work
    • Factories, plants and warehouses
    • Heritage locations
    • Hotels and other guest accommodation
    • Labs and research facilities
    • Offices and contact centres
    • Other people’s homes
    • Performing arts
    • Providers of grassroots sport and gym/leisure facilities
    • Restaurants offering takeaway or delivery
    • Shops and branches
    • Vehicles – for drivers working in or from vehicles
    • The visitor economy
  • Businesses in the following sectors will have a legal requirement to displaying the NHS QR code posters to support the NHS COVID-19 app:
    • hospitality
    • leisure and tourism
    • close contact services
    • places of worship
    • local authority venues
  • Create your personalised QR poster for people to scan and check in here: https://www.gov.uk/create-coronavirus-qr-poster

From 23rd September

  • Office workers who are able to work from home should do so 
  • People using taxis and private hire vehicles are required to wear face coverings

 From 14th September

  • People from other households cannot meet socially in groups of more than six. This applies indoors and outdoors, including in private homes. Education and work settings are unaffected.

From 25th July

  • Indoor gyms, swimming pools and sports facilities to reopen Government guidance is here.

From 24th July

  • Face coverings will have to be worn in shops and supermarkets. Children under 11 and people with certain medical conditions will be exempt.

From 13th July

  • Beauticians, tattooists, spas, tanning salons and other close-contact services can reopen. Government guidance is here.

From 11th July

  • Performing arts can take place outdoors in front of a socially distanced audience present. Government guidance is here.
  • Outdoor pools can reopen

On 23rd June the Prime Minister announced the following:

  • From 4th July the 2m social distancing rule is reduced to 1m+, still staying 2m apart where feasible
  • From 4th July two households (of any size) can meet in any setting, inside or outside. Outside people form any household can meet in groups of up to six, or from two households in groups of any size
  • From 4th July people can stay overnight in shared facilities (hotels, B&Bs, campsites). Shared facilities must be kept clean
  • From 4th July
    • Restaurants and pubs can open
      • Table service must be offered, with minimal staff / customer contact
      • Must support test and trace – must collect people’s contact details
    • Hairdressers and barbers can open as long as appropriate measures are in place and must use visors
    • Outdoor gyms, playgrounds, theme parks, libraries, museums, cinemas, social clubs, community centres can open
    • Recreation and sport is allowed but indoor facilities such as changing rooms and courts will remain closed. You can only play contact team sports with members of same household
    • Places of workshop can open and weddings can take place  

  29th May update

  • The Government published its COVID-19 recovery strategy on 11th May with the aim of the plan to “return life to as close to normal as possible, for an many people as possible as fast and fairly as possible in a way that avoids a new epidemic, minimises lives lost and maximises, health, economic and social outcomes.”
  • Good hygiene practices: hand washing, social distancing and regular disinfecting of surfaces touched by others are still essential.
  • If you have symptoms or are diagnosed with Covid-19 you must self isolate for 7 days (longer if you still have a temperature). If someone in your household has symptoms must self isolate for 14 days. Read more here.

From Monday 15th June

  • Non-essential retail can open, provided they meet COVID-19 secure guidelines to protect shoppers and workers.
  • Update 9th June: Businesses opening must complete a risk assessment and must display the Government poster in their window. Local Authorities may be completing spot checks.
    • See the Risk Assessment Templates section below and download a risk assessment template here
    • Copies of the poster are available free of charge for businesses in the BID area – simply email info@fleet-bid.co.uk to get your copy.

From Monday 8th June

  • Dental practices can re-open

From Monday 1st June

  • Outdoor markets and car showrooms can reopen, provided they meet COVID-19 secure guidelines to protect shoppers and workers. 

From Wednesday 13th May

  • Workers should continue to work from home rather than their normal physical workplace, wherever possible. Workers who cannot work from home should travel to work if their workplace is open. People are encouraged to cycle, walk or drive rather than use public transport to get to work.
  • Nannies and childminders can return to work.
  • Garden centres can open.
  • House moves and viewings can take place and estate agents and letting agents can open.
  • Workplaces should follow the Covid-19 Secure guidelines 
  • The Government have published their 5 steps to working safely. Download the printable PDF here.

Helpful Links and Resources

VAT reduction for certain sectors

From 15th July 2020 to 12th January 2021 the rate of VAT will reduce to 5% for the following services

  • hospitality
  • hotel and holiday accommodation
  • admissions to certain attractions

Find out more here.

Government Support for Businesses
The government has announced a package of measures to support businesses including:
  • a statutory sick pay (SSP) relief package for SMEs who will be able to reclaim SSP paid for sickness absence due to COVID-19. This will cover up to 2 weeks’ SSP per eligible employee who has been off work because of COVID-19. In addition employers with fewer than 250 employees will be eligible – the size of an employer will be determined by the number of people they employed as of 28 February 2020
  • increasing the Business Rates retail discount in England to 100% for the 2020 to 2021 tax year for all businesses regardless of their rateable value in the retail, leisure and hospitality sectors. Councils will apply this automatically
  • Business Rates Holiday for nurseries (England only). Nurseries in England do not have to pay business rates for the 2020-2021 tax year. Find out more
  • the coronavirus job retention scheme will be available to all businesses of any size, including charities and not for profit. Companies can apply for a grant for the wages of staff not working but still on payroll. This will be up to 80% salary and up to £2,500 per month per employee. This is backdated to 1 March and will be available for at least 3 months.
  • businesses in the retail, hospitality and leisure sectors with a rateable value under £15,000 have access to a grant of £10,000 and,  for those with a rateable value over £15,000 and below £51,000  £25,000 grants are available. Businesses in Hart can apply for these grants via Hart District Council here.
  • the Coronavirus Business Interruption Loan Scheme to support long-term viable businesses who may need to respond to cash-flow pressures by seeking additional finance up to £5m with the first 12 months interest free. Find out more here.
  • The next VAT quarter’s payment will be deferred and not due until the end of the financial year.
  • commercial tenants who are unable to pay rent because of coronavirus will be protected from eviction. Read more here.
  • the HMRC Time To Pay Scheme – call the HMRC helpline on 0800 0159 559.
  • on 2nd May the Government announced additional fund is aimed at small businesses with ongoing fixed property-related costs. £617m has been made available to councils in England and the fund will be distributed via Local Authorities, in Fleet this is Hart District Council. The government have asked local authorities to prioritise businesses in shared spaces, regular market traders, small charity properties that would meet the criteria for Small Business Rates Relief, and bed and breakfasts that pay council tax rather than business rates. But local authorities may choose to make payments to other businesses based on local economic need.

  • Read more about government support for businesses on their dedicated website here.

Business Support

Kicks

Kickstart scheme

The government’s Kickstart Scheme offers fully subsidised 6 month placements for 16-24 year olds claiming Universal Credit.  Hampshire Chamber of Commerce are taking on the role of intermediary to being together groups of businesses who want to take on fewer than 30 people and is supporting them to bid for funding. Find out more here.

NHS COVID-19 app and QR Codes

From 24th September businesses in the following sectors will have a legal requirement to displaying the NHS QR code posters to support the NHS COVID-19 app:

• hospitality;
• leisure and tourism;
• close contact services;
• places of worship; and
• local authority venues

You can create your personalised QR poster for people to scan and check in here: https://www.gov.uk/create-coronavirus-qr-poster

Covid-19 Secure guidelines for safe working

Updated 23rd September

The Government have published their Covid-19 Secure guidelines to enable workplaces are as safe as possible. Specific guidance is available for the following sectors:

  • Close contact services
  • Construction and other outdoor work
  • Factories, plants and warehouses
  • Heritage locations
  • Hotels and other guest accommodation
  • Labs and research facilities
  • Offices and contact centres
  • Other people’s homes
  • Performing arts
  • Providers of grassroots sport and gym/leisure facilities
  • Restaurants offering takeaway or delivery
  • Shops and branches
  • Vehicles – for drivers working in or from vehicles
  • The visitor economy

Read the guidance here.

Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme (Furlough)

Updated 23rd September

The Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme (CJRS)will close on 31st October.

Since 1 July, employers have been able to bring furloughed employees back to work for any amount of time and any shift pattern, while still being able to claim CJRS grant for the hours not worked.

  • From 1 September, the government will pay 70% of wages up to a cap of £2,187.50 for the hours the employee is on furlough. Employers will pay ER NICs and pension contributions and top up employees’ wages to ensure they receive 80% of their wages up to a cap of £2,500, for time they are furloughed
  • From 1 October, the government will pay 60% of wages up to a cap of £1,875 for the hours the employee is on furlough. Employers will pay ER NICs and pension contributions and top up employees’ wages to ensure they receive 80% of their wages up to a cap of £2,500, for time they are furloughed

Wage caps are proportional to the hours an employee is furloughed. For example, an employee is entitled to 60% of the £2,500 cap if they are placed on furlough for 60% of their usual hours:

Employers will continue to able to choose to top up employee wages above the 80% total and £2,500 cap for the hours not worked at their own expense if they wish. Employers will have to pay their employees for the hours worked.

Find out more here.

Fleet BID logo

FLEET BID SUPPORT

Our Back in Business car packs include posters, hand sanitiser, floor and window stickers. On our website we can create a dedicated page for any business who does not have an e-commerce operation but would like to have some products available online. 

You can also access information on suppliers of protective equipment here.

To find out more or to get involved email us.

APPLY FOR A BOUNCE BACK LOAN

From 4th May businesses can apply for Bounce Back loans, new 100% government backed loan scheme for small business to borrow between £2,000 and £50,000. 

The loans will be interest free for the first 12 months.

Apply here.


Government websites

Hart District Council

  • The Hart District Council information for businesses is here.
  • Hart District Council have created an information leaflet for businesses.  It is at the bottom of the page or download it here.
  • Parking is free in council owned car parks until the end of June.

Hampshire County Council

Hampshire County Council have a dedicate page on their website with information on coronavirus. Read more here.


Crime Prevention

Preventing Crime in Fleet Hampshire

Crime Prevention and Avoiding Fraud

  • The National Business Crime Centre have produced Crime Prevention Tips in relation to Coronavirus – download the Guidance here.
  • The National Crime Agency have issued guidance relating to fraud during the Covid-19 pandemic. Read it here.

Take Five Business Toolkit

Take Five is a national campaign led by the finance industry with advice to preventable financial fraud.

Download their toolkit here.


Support and advice from Businesses in Fleet, Webinars and Training

Kirk Rice Fleet Hampshire

Kirk Rice

  • Kirk Rice, accountants in Fleet have guidance and support on their website covering the Business Loan Interruption Scheme, Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme, Deferred VAT payment and much more. Visit the Kirk Rice website here.

Hampshire Chamber of Commerce Training & Event

Hampshire Chamber of commerce run vents and training on a wide range of topics as well as giving you access to potential customers and suppliers, project partners and a support network.

Find out more here.

HMRC Webinars

HMRC have a free webinars to learn more about the support available to help you deal with the economic impacts of coronavirus.

Find out more here.