New restrictions on Sandwell households meeting as Covid-19 cases rise
Published 11th September 2020
New restrictions on households mixing in each other’s homes have been announced in a bid to reduce the rates of coronavirus in Sandwell.
Sandwell has become an area of national intervention, along with Birmingham and Solihull, due to a rise in Covid-19 cases.
From Tuesday 15 September, Sandwell residents will not be allowed to mix with any other households in their homes or gardens.
The new restrictions are:
- People in Sandwell must not allow others from outside their households into their home or their garden.
- People from Sandwell must not go to visit other households in their homes or gardens – inside or outside of Sandwell.
Only essential visits inside homes, such as by carers, will be allowed.
The new restrictions will not affect schools, transport or workplaces.
The council is already strongly advising people to not socialise and not to visit other households NOW - even before the Government's rules come into force next week.
This is because infections are being spread in households and the rate of Covid-19 infections in Sandwell is already high.
The Covid-19 infection rate in Sandwell is currently 42.8 per 100,000 (latest data available – 2-8 September) compared with 22 per 100,000 in the previous seven days.
There were 140 positive cases in Sandwell between 2-8 September, compared with 72 cases in the previous seven days (26 August – 1 September).
Sandwell’s Director of Public Health Lisa McNally said: “We need people to take these new restrictions extremely seriously to protect each other and keep everyone safe.
“Covid-19 can kill and we need to do everything we can in Sandwell to try to limit the spread of the virus – and evidence shows close contact within people’s households is a major cause of transmission.”
Deputy Leader of Sandwell Council Councillor Maria Crompton said: “We know this is going to be difficult for people, but we need to take urgent action now to reduce the infection rate in Sandwell – we need people to take this very seriously.
“Everyone in Sandwell has their part to play. We need people to follow the rules to keep themselves and others safe, to avoid becoming infected and passing on the virus to others.
“Covid-19 has not gone away and it kills people.
“We do of course welcome any extra support from government to help reduce the spread of infection.”
Schools continue to be open to pupils.
Shops and restaurants, bars and other hospitality venues, where there are strict social distancing and hygiene rules in place, remain open.
All people in Sandwell are also advised:
- Make sure you keep your distance from others, wash your hands regularly and wear a face covering in shops, on public transport and in other enclosed spaces.
- If someone in your household has coronavirus symptoms, or has tested positive, they need to isolate for at least 10 days. Everyone in the household also needs to self-isolate for 14 days.
- Any person who has symptoms or tests positive must maintain their distance from others in the household. If you have symptoms, however mild, get tested immediately by visiting the NHS website or call 119.
- All businesses have a responsibility to ensure COVID-19 safety measures are followed such as social distancing and face coverings where appropriate. Customers are advised only to use businesses that are following the rules. If a business isn’t following the guidance, don’t go there. The council will close businesses where rules are not followed. Any concerns can be reported at the Healthy Sandwell website.