Did Britain end its COVID-19 vaccine and face mask mandates?
Take a look at the viral claims, and find out what the facts really are!
Claim : Britain Ends COVID-19 Vaccine + Face Mask Mandates!
This message has gone viral on WhatsApp, claiming that Britain has ended its COVID-19 vaccine and face mask mandates.
It’s rather long, so just skip to the next section for the facts…
Truth : Only England Ended Face Mask + COVID-19 Pass Mandates
This is yet another example of antivaxxers twisting actual news to create a false narrative.
Fact #1 : Great Britain Consists Of England, Wales + Scotland
First, we need to understand that Great Britain consists of England, Wales and Scotland, while the United Kingdom consists of Northern Ireland and Great Britain.
This is important because both Scotland and Wales have their own legislatures, their own Parliaments. Therefore, they may implement different rules from England.
Fact #2 : England Ends Plan B Measures, Not Britain
On 20 January 2022, UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson announced that Plan B measures for England will end.
This announcement only affects England, and not the entire Great Britain as the fake news claims.
Fact #3 : Plan B Restrictions Are Temporary
The fake news suggested that these restrictions were in place for the last 2 years. That’s completely misleading.
These Plan B restrictions only started on 15 December 2021 to combat the Omicron surge. That means they only lasted 6 weeks, not 2 years.
In addition, Plan B restrictions can always be restored. It all depends on the situation.
Fact #4 : England Ends Face Mask + COVID Pass Mandates
England will drop these Plan B restrictions on Thursday, 27 January 2022 :
- Face masks are no longer mandated in public places, but people are still advised to wear them in enclosed or crowded spaces, or when meeting strangers
- Secondary school students are no longer required to wear face masks in classrooms.
- The mandatory COVID pass (NHS COVID Pass) is no longer required for nightclubs and large public events, but organisations can choose to require it if they wish.
- People are no longer advised to work from home, and should consider returning to offices.
Fact #5 : Wales + Scotland Are Maintaining Some Restrictions
Both Wales and Scotland are maintaining some restrictions that are being lifted in England :
- COVID passes are still required for large events, cinemas, nightclubs and theatres.
- Face masks are still compulsory in schools, on public transport, and in shops and hospitals.
- COVID certification is still required for some venues, including night clubs.
- Organisers of large events must check the COVID status of at least 50% of attendees, or 1,000 people, whichever is larger.
- Face masks are still compulsory on public transport, and most indoor spaces.
So the claim that Britain no longer has those mandates is, well, false…
Interestingly, the fake news actually includes a link to this information. So the fake news creator is well-aware of this fact, but chose to lie to you instead.
Fact #6 : COVID Pass Mandate Only For Night Clubs + Large Events
The fake news claimed that the COVID pass was required to enter business premises, schools and churches.
That’s an outright lie. The COVID pass mandate only applied to :
- unseated indoor events with 500 or more attendees,
- unseated outdoor events with 4,000 or more attendees, and
- any event with 10,000 or more attendees.
Fact #7 : Vaccine Passport Includes Recent Negative Test Results
The term “vaccine passport” isn’t accurate, as the domestic NHS COVID Pass includes recent negative test results.
In other words, even unvaccinated people can obtain a domestic NHS COVID Pass, if they tested negative for COVID-19 recently.
Fact #8 : UK Never Had A COVID-19 Vaccine Mandate
The fake news claimed that Britain will no longer mandate COVID-19 vaccinations.
That’s utter nonsense, because there was never a COVID-19 vaccine mandate in the UK to begin with.
No one in the UK is forced to get vaccinated against COVID-19. That’s why there are still about 6.25 million unvaccinated people in the UK – 9.3% of its population.
Fact #9 : UK Has Very High Vaccination Rates
There is, frankly, no need for a COVID-19 vaccination mandate in the United Kingdom, because they have fully-vaccinated over 83% of their population.
In other words, the United Kingdom has the option to live with COVID-19, because most of their people are protected against COVID-19.
If they get infected with COVID-19, most cases will be mild and will not require hospitalisation. The risk of severe disease and death is greatly reduced by vaccines.
If you want the chance to enjoy the same freedom, it’s very simple – get vaccinated against COVID-19!
Fact #10 : COVID-19 Vaccines Are NOT Experimental
Once the COVID-19 vaccines successfully completed their clinical trials and received their EUA, they were NO LONGER EXPERIMENTAL.
The conditions to receive the EUA is similar to that of a full approval. The only real difference is the post-study follow-up :
- EUA : At least half of the participants in the studies must be followed for at least two months after vaccination.
- Full FDA Approval : All of the participants in the studies must be followed for at least six months.
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