| 24 May 2024, Friday |

Work from home and vaccine passports: UK PM introduces Plan B to battle surge in Covid cases

UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson announced new restrictions to curb the growing wave of the deadly virus. As a part of ‘Plan B’, vaccine passports have been mandated for places with larger crowds. Also, guidelines for work from home have also been issued, as Covid cases continue to surge in England amid fears of a new variant.
The passes will be required “for entry into nightclubs and venues where large crowds gather”, Johnson said. He further added, “From Monday, you should work from home if you can, go to work if you must.”
With this, the government has also mandated masks in “most public indoor venues, including theatres and cinemas.”
Further, Johnson urged people to get vaccinated as he said that the “single biggest thing that every one of us can do is to get our jabs and crucially to get that booster as soon as our turn arrives.”
As of now, there have been 568 confirmed cases of the Omicron variant, said Health Secretary Sajid Javid. He further warned that the actual figure must be “closer to 10,000”. This comes just after PM Johnson has said that early indications suggest the variant “is more transmissible than Delta”. He warned that there could be a “big rise in hospitalisations”.
During the brief, he said, “We must be humble in the face of this virus, the proportionate and the responsible thing to move to Plan B in England”.
Elaborating on the new variant he said that it is “growing much faster than the previously dominant Delta variant and “we can’t yet assume Omicron is less severe than previous variants”.
This comes in amid the ongoing controversy of leaked video footage where his aides can be seen joking about an alleged Christmas party at Downing Street during last year’s lockdown. He has garnered criticism by several people including politicians and media, over flouting of norms by the government when it is forcing others to follow them.