May 11, 2020 - World

U.K.'s coronavirus reopening plan advises wearing face coverings in enclosed spaces

Commuters returning to work on Market Street in Manchester City centre on May 11.

Commuters return to work on Market Street in Manchester. Photo: Anthony Devlin/Getty Images

The U.K. government released Monday a 60-page plan to reopen its economy by easing the coronavirus lockdown restrictions that it has maintained since March.

The state of play: The plan advises all people to wear face coverings in enclosed spaces and to avoid public transportation — but says that "all workers who cannot work from home should travel to work if their workplace is open."

  • It also allows people to leave their homes to exercise, to sit in local parks and to play sports with members of their own household.
  • The guidance says that people may meet with a single person from outside their household — but only at a distance of six feet.

The big picture: Prime Minister Boris Johnson addressed the nation yesterday, laying out the government's three-stage plan to ease restrictions over the summer.

  • "This is not the time simply to end the lockdown this week," Johnson said. "Instead we are taking the first careful steps to modify our measures."
  • The U.K. has experienced the second-highest confirmed coronavirus death toll in the world and the highest in Europe. It has reported more than 220,000 recorded cases and 31,000 deaths from the virus as of Monday, according to Johns Hopkins University data.

Read the plan.

Go deeper