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Freedom Day: From masks to social distancing – what new rules come into effect on July 19?

Sajid Javid pledges to meet July 19th lockdown goals

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“Freedom Day” is the day where all social distancing are set to be lifted. This was pushed back last month over concerns about the rise in cases of the Delta variant. With the new Freedom Day in sight will there be any new rules to follow?

The Government has strongly suggested the new date of July 19 will mark the final stage of lifting of all social distancing restrictions.

Prime Minister Boris Johnson stated the country could “go back to life as it was before Covid as far as possible”.

The Government has said we are on track to move into a period without legal restrictions on social distancing.

The Housing Secretary, Robert Jenrick said this morning (July 4) masks will likely become a personal choice and that he expects an end to all restrictions in England on July 19.

Mr Jenrick told the BBC: “It does look as if – thanks to the success of the vaccine programme – that we now have the scope to roll back those restrictions and return to a normality as far as possible.”

Although he acknowledged cases might continue to rise as restrictions were eased he said: “We now have to move into a different period where we learn to live with the virus, we take precautions and we as individuals take personal responsibility.”

The latest message from the Government suggests all rules on social distancing will be scrapped on July 19.

The focus will be on Brits taking personal responsibility to limit the spread of the virus and to act responsibly.

Mr Jenrick added: “We are now going to move into a period where there won’t be legal restrictions – the state won’t be telling you what to do – but you will want to exercise a degree of personal responsibility and judgement.”

If the Government goes ahead as planned venues such as nightclubs will be allowed to open again.

Large gatherings without social distancing measures will be allowed and large events such as music festivals will be given the green light.

The Government has been put under growing pressure to scrap the bubble system in schools.

The system has been condemned for being disruptive to students learning, as it means entire groups of pupils have to self-isolate if one pupil within their bubble tests positive for the virus.

Mr Jenrik said the Government would be making a statement on school bubbles before July 19.

The Government has also come under fire for the legal requirement for those who have come into contact with someone with the virus to self-isolate.

The NHS app has been pinging many Brits who have had to take time off work to isolate even though they have not tested positive for the virus.

Downing Street has confirmed it’s considering dropping all legal self-isolation measures for those who have been double jabbed if they come into contact with someone who has tested positive “as part of the post-Step 4 world”.

Will any rules still be enforced?

Although domestic rules are due to be lifted, rules on international travel will still be enforced.

Under current plans, the Government will continue with the travel traffic light system.

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