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From Monday 19th July - Government has laid Regulations revoking (most) restrictions

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yorkie

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I'm more nervous over Monday than I was the day the mask mandate came in. I would hope most staff would consider it more than their jobs worth to get arsey with people over masks.

I am expecting to notice that most of those contuing to wear a mask will be women while us blokes will be mostly maskless. Just a theory.
Have an exemption card ready to show, if applicable (this is not legal requirement but can make things easier). If anyone would like one, let me know (I can print them onto card & laminate them for you)

Just let us clarify one recurring matter. Now that the Governmental legal requirements are said to end on 19th July, what is the legal position if any establishment sets their own company-applicable standards of entry to their premises and displays large clearly written posters to that effect at any entrance to their premises stating same. Anyone legally minded on this website thread who can give their view of any law applicable to such a situation.
If they deny someone a service, it could cost them dearly

https://disabilityrights.org.uk/first-face-mask-discrimination-case-nets-7-000
A disabled woman assisted by Kester Disability Rights has been paid £7,000 in compensation by a service provider who refused her access to a service because she was unable to wear a face mask.

The pay-out was achieved through negotiation as there was no dispute that access had been denied, or that the Claimant had a disability exemption. The only thing to be agreed was the amount of compensation, not whether it was due or not.
 
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trebor79

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Yes, call me a cynical old ***, but I can't help but wonder if the NHS COVID App has been deliberately altered so that it is way too oversensitive. (ie. it pings more people than is strictly necessary, so that these people are bullied into advised to self isolate go into lockdown, despite there being no legal obligation to do so.
It's not beyond the realms of possibility but I think they'd be rumbled pretty quickly as there are some people out there who dissect all of the app updates to work out what's been changed.
 

duncanp

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You know I did wonder that after the app was updated a bit back, there could be some substance in it.

Parts of the economy closed, and millions of people bullied into staying at home sounds suspiciously like, er, a lockdown.

Some papers are already calling it a "..lockdown by stealth...".

I only hope that enough people delete the App and tell the government they can go and stick their self isolation somewhere where the sun doesn't shine.

That is not to say that people shouldn't be sensible, and get tested and stay at home if they have any symptoms.

But you shouldn't have to endure 10 days house arrest just because someone 500 yards away who might have COVID-19 sneezed or coughed a little.

The cynic in me also says the NHS COVID App will be deliberately tweaked in the Autumn so as to ping more people in order to impose another lockdown by stealth keep people safe from this virus.
 

Watershed

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Just let us clarify one recurring matter. Now that the Governmental legal requirements are said to end on 19th July, what is the legal position if any establishment sets their own company-applicable standards of entry to their premises and displays large clearly written posters to that effect at any entrance to their premises stating same. Anyone legally minded on this website thread who can give their view of any law applicable to such a situation.
The default common law position is that anyone is entitled to restrict entry to their own private property as they see fit - in other words, masks are no different to a dress code.

However, shops, public transport operators etc. will be service providers falling under the Equality Act, and will thus be under an obligation to proactively and reactively make reasonable adjustments for those who have disabilities preventing them from wearing a mask.

So a blanket policy of "no mask, no entry, no exemptions" is likely to be a breach of the Equality Act. But an approach saying "no mask, no entry, unless you have a disability preventing you from wearing one" would probably be lawful. And as humiliating as it may be, you may have to disclose the nature of your disability to be entitled to the protection of the Act.

Scrolling through a few English TOC Twitter feeds, in response to questions about masks from Monday they are all giving a similarly-worded non-committal response about the matter being under review, and an update will be provided ‘within the next few days’.

Evidently industry-wide discussions with Government remain underway, and I expect the outcome will be ‘You should still wear a mask on public transport’, even if the legislative force behind the messaging is gone.
The current position is that the messaging will be "Travel with Confidence. Please be considerate of other passengers and rail staff in crowded spaces, wear a face covering out of respect to others."

Which at least makes clear that there is no intention to create any (legal) obligation to wear a mask.
 

Bishopstone

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The current position is that the messaging will be "Travel with Confidence. Please be considerate of other passengers and rail staff in crowded spaces, wear a face covering out of respect to others."

Which at least makes clear that there is no intention to create any (legal) obligation to wear a mask.

I fear that next week’s tedious battle will be around the different interpretations of what constitutes a crowded space.

The ‘it’s too vague, we need clear rules!’ brigade will be back out in force.
 

yorkie

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I fear that next week’s tedious battle will be around the different interpretations of what constitutes a crowded space.

The ‘it’s too vague, we need clear rules!’ brigade will be back out in force.
If anyone tries it on when I'm around I will be making it very clear that it is not a legal requirement and it is personal choice. I won't be putting up with nonsense.
 

trebor79

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The current position is that the messaging will be "Travel with Confidence. Please be considerate of other passengers and rail staff in crowded spaces, wear a face covering out of respect to others."

Which at least makes clear that there is no intention to create any (legal) obligation to wear a mask.
I find the "wear a facemask as a courtesy/out of respect" even more laughably tedious than those who claim it's saving lives.
If anyone tries it on when I'm around I will be making it very clear that it is not a legal requirement and it is personal choice. I won't be putting up with nonsense.
Yep, wont be even carrying a mask with me from Monday.
 

big_rig

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I fear that next week’s tedious battle will be around the different interpretations of what constitutes a crowded space.

The ‘it’s too vague, we need clear rules!’ brigade will be back out in force.
I have to agree - something especially frustrating about this saga has been the deliberate muddying of the water around rules by the ‘we need rules’ brigade. I remember when Scotland had different rules for foreign travel than England and pro-restriction people were trying to make that an argument for aligning them to the more restrictive one, because Scots….might get confused whether they are returning to Scotland or England..??
 

Failed Unit

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The default common law position is that anyone is entitled to restrict entry to their own private property as they see fit - in other words, masks are no different to a dress code.

However, shops, public transport operators etc. will be service providers falling under the Equality Act, and will thus be under an obligation to proactively and reactively make reasonable adjustments for those who have disabilities preventing them from wearing a mask.

So a blanket policy of "no mask, no entry, no exemptions" is likely to be a breach of the Equality Act. But an approach saying "no mask, no entry, unless you have a disability preventing you from wearing one" would probably be lawful. And as humiliating as it may be, you may have to disclose the nature of your disability to be entitled to the protection of the Act.


The current position is that the messaging will be "Travel with Confidence. Please be considerate of other passengers and rail staff in crowded spaces, wear a face covering out of respect to others."

Which at least makes clear that there is no intention to create any (legal) obligation to wear a mask.
It was nice to see someone taking LNER to task on this - they were basically asking why is more risky to be say around a table on a train rather than in a pub / cafe where you don't need masks. Reminding them they are an inter-city operator and that they tend not to be over-crowded. The only difference I can think of is that on the train you may be forced to sit next to a stranger by the reservations where this probably isn't the case in a cafe / pub anymore.
 

Xenophon PCDGS

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I have to agree - something especially frustrating about this saga has been the deliberate muddying of the water around rules by the ‘we need rules’ brigade. I remember when Scotland had different rules for foreign travel than England and pro-restriction people were trying to make that an argument for aligning them to the more restrictive one, because Scots….might get confused whether they are returning to Scotland or England..??
I see that what occured prior to the Act of Union in 1707 has not been forgotten... :p
 

island

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Just let us clarify one recurring matter. Now that the Governmental legal requirements are said to end on 19th July, what is the legal position if any establishment sets their own company-applicable standards of entry to their premises and displays large clearly written posters to that effect at any entrance to their premises stating same. Anyone legally minded on this website thread who can give their view of any law applicable to such a situation.
Any requirement would need to comply with the Equality Act 2010, including that any blanket rules regarding the wearing of face coverings that have the effect of discriminating against anyone with a disability would need to be justified as a proportionate means of achieving a legitimate aim.

Only a court can conclusively determine where that border lies.
 

brad465

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It sounds like if anyone is going to try and force a u-turn on this unlocking, it's the international scientific community, who are voicing condemnation for the planned unlocking next week:


Boris Johnson’s plan to lift virtually all of England’s pandemic restrictions on Monday is a threat to the world and provides fertile ground for the emergence of vaccine-resistant variants, international experts say.

At an emergency summit on Friday government advisers in New Zealand, Israel and Italy sounded alarm bells about Downing Street’s policy, while more than 1,200 scientists backed a letter to the Lancet journal warning that the strategy could allow vaccine-resistant variants to develop.

The letter said: “We believe the government is embarking on a dangerous and unethical experiment, and we call on it to pause plans to abandon mitigations on July 19, 2021.”

“The world is watching the current avoidable crisis unfold in the UK,” said Dr Deepti Gurdasani, a clinical epidemiologist and senior lecturer at Queen Mary University of London, who is taking part in Friday’s summit.

She added on Twitter: “Let’s be under no illusions – we are in a country where our government is taking steps to maximally expose our young to a virus that causes chronic illness in many. Our govt is ending all protections for our children including isolation of contacts of cases in schools & bubbles.”

The summit, All the Citizens, was being broadcast live on YouTube at noon UK time.

Among those urging the UK government to “urgently reconsider” its plans was Prof Meir Rubin, an adviser to the Israeli government, who went on Twitter on Friday to highlighted the risks to young people in Britain.

Professor Shu-Ti Chiou, a former director-general of Taiwan’s health department, said on Twitter: “What does a ‘responsible’ reopen look like? What freedom do we value – the freedom from preventable #Covid19 sequelae, or the freedom of not doing anything to protect ourselves?”
 

big_rig

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Last gasp of a desperate bunch. I think England poses about as much threat to the world as the 17 million mink Denmark killed last year, if anybody remembers how they were meant to ruin the vaccines. Poor creatures!
 

trebor79

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FGS, how is allowing people to live as they choose an "unethical and dangerous experiment"?!

Might have know Deepti would be orchestrating it.
 

Yew

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FGS, how is allowing people to live as they choose an "unethical and dangerous experiment"?!

Might have know Deepti would be orchestrating it.
If they want something "unethical and dangerous" I suggest they look at the restrictions of the last year!
 

TPO

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Maybe it's about time that employers especially in rail grew a pair and said "if you've been pinged by the app and choose to self-isolate, fine but we won't pay sick pay so you either take leave or don't get paid for 10 days." Being pinged by the app is NOT the same as being contacted by the tracing system (when you MUST follow their instruction).

The cynic realist in me says that for too many people, being"pinged" by the app is a way to get time off. I was delivering a training course not so long since, one of the delegates was being teased by his workmates as "Mr Ping" as he scanned every barcode he passed in the hope he would be pinged by the app and have another 10 days paid leave. Apparently he'd managed it a couple of times. (This was in the rail industry BTW).

The app needs to be more realistic, or better still no isolation if you've had both jabs. If you are medically fit enough to have a jab, decline it and are pinged, you either come into work or don't get paid- your choice. (No use moaning, it's the situation which has been faced by a lot of self-employed workers and small businesses for over a year now).

Within a couple of weeks, this issue would go away.

Of course it won't happen particularly in rail as the TUs still seem as maskivist as ever, TSSA which has in the past been less extreme is fully on the maskivist bandwagon and I'm on the verge of cancelling my membership (and telling them why).

I am also on the verge of writing to a professional scientific society I belong to with a couple of questions for the scientific community:
(1) What is the number of PCR cycles for these "positive" tests and can we please have PCR cycle banding with results- e.g. X cases at 25 cycles, Y cases at 45 cycles.
(2) Why are we not distinguishing between hospitalised "with COVID" and "for COVID"
(3) Why are we not calling out the possible impact of the clear political views of certain SAGE members e.g. Comrade Mitchie with the same vigour was Cummings was criticised for political input to SAGE last year?
(4) Why is it that the govt SP-IM group decision that masks, originally introduced to reassure but instead found to keep the climate of fear heightened, would be kept in place to keep this heightened fear effect is not being discussed more openly as it's a clear issue of scientific ethics here?
(5) On what basis have we changed the definition of a "case" from "showing a set of symptoms" to "positive on a test with a level of X false positives" and why?

The final question is: If we cannot have the answers to these questions, why is the "scientific community" supporting those who won't give these answers as clearly they are important to "the science" in all this.

We don't have a pandemic, we have a case-demic. I'd also bet that a significant proportion of the cases are false positives (too many PCR cycles and generally low background rate) and if we looked at the number of people in hospital DUE TO severe COVID symptoms rather than in for something else but happen to have a positive test, we'd have a very different picture.

There's lies, damn lies and statistics. Manipulating the statistics isn't science and it's about time the scientific community focused their minds on that as otherwise history will judge them and it will be the death knell for good science.

TPO
 

philosopher

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It sounds like if anyone is going to try and force a u-turn on this unlocking, it's the international scientific community, who are voicing condemnation for the planned unlocking next week:

Most US states I think removed almost all restrictions several weeks or some cases months ago. Are they too undertaking a dangerous and unethical experiment?

In any case, the UK has less than 1% of the world’s population. A vaccine resistant variant is statistically much more likely to arise somewhere else, regardless of what the UK does.
 

brad465

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Most US states I think removed almost all restrictions several weeks or some cases months ago. Are they too undertaking a dangerous and unethical experiment?

In any case, the UK has less than 1% of the world’s population. A vaccine resistant variant is statistically much more likely to arise somewhere else, regardless of what the UK does.
Yes very true about the US. Also I'm really sick to death of all this talk about trying to stop new variants forming as if humans can control this. We can't, because humans are not exceptional and if a virus is capable of mutating, it will mutate. Also even if we could stop it, getting every country in the world to agree on the same approach won't happen; look no further than Bolsonaro for proof of that.

The Zoe study, which seems to be the one ahead of all others when it comes to trends, is showing a clear flatlining, and it's daily case estimate has declined in the last 2 days. If this trend continues and is replicated in other measures with a lag time we appear to be clearing the peak, and given so much was already open before, next week likely won't make much of a difference, especially with schools now breaking up.
 

sjpowermac

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If this trend continues and is replicated in other measures with a lag time we appear to be clearing the peak, and given so much was already open before, next week likely won't make much of a difference, especially with schools now breaking up.
Do you have a source to back up your claim about schools? If you don’t have a source, would you at least explain your reasoning? It’s the third time in as many days that you’ve mentioned their impact on cases.

For the avoidance of doubt, I’m not arguing against ‘Freedom Day’ (that has turned out to be not quite as free as I hoped).
 

Failed Unit

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Do you have a source to back up your claim about schools? If you don’t have a source, would you at least explain your reasoning? It’s the third time in as many days that you’ve mentioned their impact on cases.

For the avoidance of doubt, I’m not arguing against ‘Freedom Day’ (that has turned out to be not quite as free as I hoped).
The school classes seem to have a good transfer rate. We had 5 go down in my sons class. Whether that makes any difference we will see as the kids will still be hanging out.
 

sjpowermac

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The school classes seem to have a good transfer rate. We had 5 go down in my sons class. Whether that makes any difference we will see as the kids will still be hanging out.
But is there any proof that the transmission happened in school? There are numerous posts in the ‘Return to Education’ thread claiming that there is little or no transmission in schools.

Here is an example:
I don't know what you are referring to but there really is no issue with schools going back.

Schools were back for around 14 weeks in the autumn term with no real issues.
From about May 2020 onwards I supported the full re-opening of schools.

I’m genuinely curious though as to what the research says, if anything, about the role that schools have played, especially given that several posters have mentioned schools without giving any evidence.
 

brad465

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Do you have a source to back up your claim about schools? If you don’t have a source, would you at least explain your reasoning? It’s the third time in as many days that you’ve mentioned their impact on cases.

For the avoidance of doubt, I’m not arguing against ‘Freedom Day’ (that has turned out to be not quite as free as I hoped).
September last year saw the second wave start not long after schools went back is the main reasoning, and it's well known that other respiratory viruses pick up at a similar time (in the case of Universities, this is called Freshers Flu).
 

Failed Unit

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But is there any proof that the transmission happened in school? There are numerous posts in the ‘Return to Education’ thread claiming that there is little or no transmission in schools.

Here is an example:

From about May 2020 onwards I supported the full re-opening of schools.

I’m genuinely curious though as to what the research says, if anything, about the role that schools have played, especially given that several posters have mentioned schools without giving any evidence.
Coincidence. They were in the same class all week and non of the 5 were together at the weekend. However then it gets odd as they didn’t sit near each other. All 5 could have got it from there parents who also tested positive.
 

MikeWM

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Most US states I think removed almost all restrictions several weeks or some cases months ago. Are they too undertaking a dangerous and unethical experiment?

The ‘usual suspects’ said so at the time, yes - eg. for Florida last autumn, and then Texas back in March (‘Neanderthal thinking’ was one of the more colourful phrases). When nothing bad then actually happens, they’re not held accountable of course, they just move along and say the same things about the next place that tries to move somewhat back to ‘normal’.
 

Skimpot flyer

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I'm more nervous over Monday than I was the day the mask mandate came in. I would hope most staff would consider it more than their jobs worth to get arsey with people over masks.

I am expecting to notice that most of those contuing to wear a mask will be women while us blokes will be mostly maskless. Just a theory.
Wouldn’t be too sure of that.
I was just on a busy train in London and a man built like the proverbial brick s_ithouse, was wearing a mask correctly over nose and mouth, whilst others in the carriage were wearing in chin-warmer style or bare-faced, like me.
This guy was covered in tattoos and looked like a rugby prop-forward. I had to smile at the largest of the tattoos…. which proclaimed ‘NO FEAR’
 

Crossover

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Maybe it's about time that employers especially in rail grew a pair and said "if you've been pinged by the app and choose to self-isolate, fine but we won't pay sick pay so you either take leave or don't get paid for 10 days." Being pinged by the app is NOT the same as being contacted by the tracing system (when you MUST follow their instruction).

The cynic realist in me says that for too many people, being"pinged" by the app is a way to get time off. I was delivering a training course not so long since, one of the delegates was being teased by his workmates as "Mr Ping" as he scanned every barcode he passed in the hope he would be pinged by the app and have another 10 days paid leave. Apparently he'd managed it a couple of times. (This was in the rail industry BTW).

I’m a tad rusty but I don’t believe my employer pays isolation, but will consider allowing holiday leave. Isolation after testing positive does attract either SSP (no waiting days) or company sick, depending on the employee contract

On the other guy you mention, he is sadly mistaken if he thinks scanning barcodes will get to isolation - all it’ll do is ping a notification advising a venue had a positive case whilst you were checked in (bearing in mind it doesn’t check you out til midnight if you don’t scan elsewhere in the day), but doesn’t say where, just advises to monitor for symptoms. The isolation pings come from contact tracing (using Bluetooth)
 

DelayRepay

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Do you have a source to back up your claim about schools? If you don’t have a source, would you at least explain your reasoning? It’s the third time in as many days that you’ve mentioned their impact on cases.

One factor to take into account is the regular testing of secondary school kids. When the schools break up this will stop, so we won't find these cases which are generally without symptoms.

So even if actual case numbers don't drop, reported case numbers could drop simply because we're not identifying them through the school testing.
 
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Bantamzen

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It sounds like if anyone is going to try and force a u-turn on this unlocking, it's the international scientific community, who are voicing condemnation for the planned unlocking next week:

"Scientists say one of the most vaccinated countries in the world taking their masks off is a threat to the world"

Well done Science, well done...
 

Class 33

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These darn "scientists" can bugger off with their nonsense. 19th July it's no longer legal to wear face masks, and that's that. Time to finally move on from this face mask nonsense.
 
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yorkie

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"Scientists say one of the most vaccinated countries in the world taking their masks off is a threat to the world"

Well done Science, well done...
Michael Baker, Deepti Gurdasani, Christina Pagel and their ilk have agendas which means they really should not be trusted. They are dangerous authoritarians who do not believe in the effectiveness of vaccines. I've noticed increased distrust of vaccines among those who seek to impose / retain restrictions.

Anything those toxic trio are saying should be viewed with deep suspicion.
 
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