Yesterday, Borris Johnson revealed that all non-essential shops can open from June 15th as part of plans to further ease the lockdown.
In a speech addressing the nation yesterday, Borris Johnson said that the move to open these outlets was “contingent on progress in the fight against coronavirus”, and retailers will have to adhere to new guidelines to protect shoppers and workers.
Since the 23rd of March, fashion retailers, garden stores and markets have all been shut to prohibit the spread of Coronavirus. As a result, many employees in this sector have been placed on a government furlough scheme, where they are paid only 80% of their wages.
Mr Johnson said new guidance had been published for the retail sector “detailing the measures they should take to meet the necessary social distancing and hygiene standards”.
He added: “I want people to be confident that they can shop safely, provided they follow the social distancing rules for all premises.”
“The timing of the announcement that non-essential shops can potentially open from 15 June feels deeply orchestrated given Durhamgate, comments Jack Izzard, director of the The Great British Bounce Back, an organisation representing small and micro businesses seeking to rebound from the Covid-19 pandemic.
“While the news that shops can open from mid-June is a massive boost on the surface, the reality is that retailers have had their entire business models dynamited overnight and that this is largely a symbolic announcement.
“The truth is that the UK economy is not going to suddenly come round, dust itself off and carry on as normal. Everything has changed and we need to see how Government is going to address the challenges of businesses moving forward.
“Boris Johnson suggested that a bounce back on the high street could happen in the coming months. Who’s he kidding?
“The impact of lockdown and the Covid-19 pandemic has reshaped the entire economic landscape and we will be adjusting to the new normal for many years to come.”
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