S’pore to soften the borders of Covid-19 in 2 phases from June 14: everything you need to know, Singapore News & Top Stories
SINGAPORE – The stricter measures currently in place to reduce the spread of Covid-19 will be gradually relaxed from next Monday (June 14).
In a statement released Thursday, the Ministry of Health (MOH) said Singapore would gradually reopen and move to phase three (enhanced alert) in two stages.
Here are the key announcements.
1. The ceiling for social gatherings will drop from two to five from June 14
The current limit of two people for group social gatherings will be increased to five starting next Monday.
The same two-person cap on the number of unique daily visitors to a household will also be increased to five.
The health ministry said such gatherings should always be limited to small groups of regular contact, to reduce the likelihood of transmission.
He advised the public to limit the number of social gatherings to no more than two per day.
READ THE FULL STORY: S’pore to relax the rules of Covid-19 in 2 phases: group size increases to 5 from June 14; meals on site resume from June 21
2. Event size and capacity limits will be increased from June 14
Attractions, cruises, museums and public libraries will be allowed to operate at 50% of their normal capacity from June 14, up from 25% currently.
Event size will also be increased and live performances and spectator sporting events can resume.
Events such as movie screenings in theaters, events in the mouse industry (meetings, incentives, conferences, exhibitions), religious services and the celebration of marriage outside the home may resume with a maximum of 250 participants, if pre-event testing (PET) is conducted.
For weddings, the ceiling includes the bride and groom but not the celebrants or vendors.
Home celebrations will be permitted for groups of up to five visitors, excluding host family members, or up to 10 participants in total, whichever is greater.
PET will not be required for events with 50 participants or less.
From Monday, personal care services that require the removal of masks, such as facials, will be allowed to resume.
But unmasking and singing or playing wind instruments, as well as wedding receptions with dinner on site, will not be able to resume until June 21.
3. Dinner on site only from June 21
Meals at food and beverage outlets (F&B) may be permitted from June 21, if the situation remains under control.
These are considered high risk environments, the health ministry said.
He reminded F&B establishments to strictly respect a safety distance of 1 m between groups of diners.
Groups should also be limited to five people and customers should wear their masks at all times except when eating and drinking.
Wedding receptions will be permitted for a maximum of 100 attendees – a number that includes the couple but not celebrants or vendors – with PET in place for all attendees.
PET will only be required for the wedding party of up to 20 participants if the reception has 50 participants or less in total.
4. Gymnasiums, sports and school lessons resume from June 21
From June 21, fitness studios and gymnasiums will be able to resume activities that involve removing the mask, with a safety distance of at least 2 m between people and 3 m between groups of up to five.
Sports lessons, both indoors and outdoors, will be limited to 30 people, instructor included, and groups must not exceed five people.
In-person classes and enrichment classes for those aged 18 and under may also be allowed to resume from June 21. This includes lessons in singing or playing wind instruments.
READ FULL STORY: Indoor mask activities allowed in gyms, fitness studios from June 21 – if situation remains under control
5. Homework remains the default; targeted support measures to continue
Employers need to ensure that employees who can work from home continue to do so even as Singapore gradually reopens, the health ministry said.
This is how overall attendance and interactions in public are reduced, reducing the risk of infections.
For those who need to return to the workplace, their start times should be staggered and they should have flexible working hours.
Employers will still not be allowed to deploy workers to multiple work sites.
As some activities remain closed until June 20, the government will extend current enhancements to the Employment Support Program (JSS) for affected sectors.
From June 21 to 30, affected sectors will receive 10 percent JSS support.
The Covid-19 Driver Relief Fund for taxi drivers and private drivers will also be extended for three months.
This amount will be set at $ 300 per vehicle each month for July and August, and $ 150 per vehicle for September.
6. Regular testing for staff in high risk activities and sale of self-test kits
Regular testing will be implemented for staff working in F&B establishments with catering, personal care services requiring the removal of masks and gyms or fitness studios where customers are unmasked.
The “quick and easy” testing regimen will use, for example, rapid antigen testing (ART) for all staff, regardless of immunization status.
ART self-test kits will also be sold at retail pharmacies like Guardian, Unity and Watsons starting June 16.
More details on these kits will be available from June 16, the health ministry said.
Sales will initially be limited to 10 kits per person.
READ THE FULL STORY: Staff in high-risk environments with unmasked clients should undergo regular Covid-19 testing
7. Vaccination reservations for 12 to 39 year olds from June 11
Singaporeans between the ages of 12 and 39 will be able to register online for the vaccination and make an appointment starting Friday.
The Health Department said the booking link can take up to two weeks to be sent to those who sign up, as more vaccination appointment slots open when more supplies arrive.
The rest of the resident population will be invited to register in the coming months.
Those who had previously recovered from Covid-19 infection are recommended to receive only one dose of the vaccine, the health ministry said.
This is because those who have recovered in the past six months are likely to still have strong immunity.
Children under 18 will need parental permission to make an appointment.
READ FULL STORY: Singaporeans ages 12-39 can make vaccination appointments starting Friday