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Daily Update - 12th May

Job Retention Scheme

The job retention scheme will be extended, for four months, until the end of October. There will be no changes until the end of July, however, from August to October employers currently using the scheme will be able to bring furloughed employees back part-time. The Government will ask employers to start sharing the costs of paying people’s salaries but there is no detail on what this contribution will be. It has been confirmed that workers will, through the combined efforts of government and employers, continue to receive the same level of support as they do now, at 80% of their salary, up to £2,500. Further detail will follow by the end of May.

For more detailed information on the Job Retention Scheme please refer to our article.

Five Stage Recovery Plan

The Executive announced its pathway to recovery today. The plan does not have dates for movement to the next stage and the decision will be made based on key criteria being met. Currently reviews occur every three weeks and the next review is due 28th May so if, at that point the Executive consider it appropriate, we will move to stage 1 of the plan. It has however been reported that the Executive may move to Stage 1 sooner than the 28th. This process will continue every three weeks and we may or may not move to the next stage depending onthe criteria being met.


The plan sees the phased return to work subject to risk assessments, however remote working where possible is still included in step 5.


Garden centres can open in step 1 with non-food retailers opening is step 2 subject to social distancing. This will extend to hairdressers, gyms in step 4 followed by hospitality and retail in step 5.


It is step 4 before all children are able to go to school and this will be on a part-time basis.


Public transport will continue to operate but people will be encouraged to walk and cycle for short journeys. By step 4, it is likely that demand for public transport will increase but it is predicted that staggered business start times and continued home-schooling will reduce pressure. Step 5 sees a return to full service

Family and Community

Step 1 allow groups of 4 to 6 people meeting outdoors with social distancing. This number gradually increases through the steps with groups of up to 30 people are allowed by step 3. Step 4 allows for church services to occur but must be subject to social distancing. Step 5 allows extended group but again, social distancing must be adhered to.

Sports, cultural and leisure activities

Step 1 allows outdoor spaces and public amenities to open and team sports training can resume but on a non-contact basis. Museums, galleries and libraries can open in Step 3 and by step 4, leisure centres can open and competitive sports can resume with limitation on numbers of spectators.

The summary document is below and the steps are detailed in pages 4 and 5.

The previously published Workplace Safety Guide and Priority Sectors list are available to employers to assist in preparation for those returning to work.