Face mask rules to be lifted on Monday

By Dylan Davies   |   News editor   |
Thursday 24th March 2022 10:00 pm
@dylandavies1
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Mark Drakeford First Minister
First Minister Mark Drakeford will announce the changes on Friday (Welsh Government )

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RULES on wearing face masks in shops and on public transport will be lifted on Monday, the First Minister has confirmed this evening.

Despite concerns over a rise in Covid-19 cases across Wales, from Monday, face coverings will no longer be required by law in retail settings and on public transport, though they will continue to be recommended in public health settings.

First Minister Mark Drakeford will also announce tomorrow that the requirement to self-isolate if you test positive for Covid-19 will move into guidance, as opposed to law.

A £500 self-isolation payment to support people will continue to be available until June.

However, two key legal protections will remain in place as coronavirus cases have risen sharply in recent weeks, driven by the BA.2 sub-type of the omicron variant.

Face coverings will remain a legal requirement in health and social care settings and coronavirus risk assessments must continue to be carried out by businesses, with reasonable measures put in place in light of those assessments.

First Minister Mark Drakeford said: “We have seen an unwelcome rise in coronavirus cases across Wales, mirroring the position in most of the UK.

“We have carefully considered the very latest scientific and medical evidence and we need to keep some legal protections in place for a little while longer, to help keep Wales safe.

“Throughout the pandemic, we have taken a gradual and cautious approach as we have relaxed protections.

“We are firmly on the path towards leaving the emergency response to the pandemic behind us and learning to live with coronavirus safely.”

The next three-weekly review of coronavirus regulations will be carried out by 14 April, when the remaining legal measures will be reviewed.

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