UK told to work from home 'if possible' ahead of strict new lockdown restrictions

22 September 2020, 10:04

Michael Gove has said people should work from home
Michael Gove has said people should work from home. Picture: PA Images/Getty Images

Michael Gove has said employees should work from home where they can.

Just weeks after people were encouraged to head back to the office, now Michael Gove has said Brits should work from home where possible.

Ahead of new lockdown measures set to be announced today, the Cabinet Office Minister confirmed advice about going back to the workplace will change.

He told Sky news: "If it is possible for people to work from home then we would encourage them to do so.

"It's important to stress that there are many, many, many roles that can't be performed from home... there are people in manufacturing, construction, retail and other roles... we recognise it is simply impossible.

Michael Gove has said workers should stay home if they can
Michael Gove has said workers should stay home if they can. Picture: PA Images

"That's why we have worked to ensure you can have Covid-secure workplaces.”

He continued: "We need to balance the need for people to work and continue to go to school against taking steps to try and reduce the virus.

Read More: Boris Johnson to announce 10PM curfew for pubs and restaurants in England

"If we can encourage people to work from home, we will, but if people need to be in the office, we will work to make it as safe as possible."

Speaking the BBC later, Gove said that it was not a case of "revisiting the days at the beginning of our response to this virus" as "workplaces are safer".

"But one of the risks that we have to face is that social mixing overall contributes to the spread of the virus,” he said, adding: "So as much as we can restrain that as possible at this stage, the better for all of us and for public health."

This comes as Boris Johnson is set to address the nation on Tuesday evening, where he will reveal tough new restrictions to stop the spread of coronavirus.

The Prime Minister previously encouraged workers to get back to the office as soon as possible over the summer to boost the economy.

But with cases rapidly rising across the country, the government will be announcing a 10pm curfew on all hospitality across the country.