COVID-19: Update on face coverings, disposing of business waste & Eat Out to Help Out

Please find today’s key government updates below:

1) Face coverings mandatory in shops and supermarkets in England 

The government has announced that face coverings will be mandatory in shops and supermarkets from 24 July 2020.

Under the new rules, people who do not wear a face covering will face a fine of up to £100, in line with the sanction on public transport and just as with public transport, children under 11 and those with certain disabilities will be exempt.

The liability for wearing a face covering lies with the individual.

Should an individual without an exemption refuse to wear a face covering, a shop can refuse them entry and can call the police. The police have formal enforcement powers and can issue a fine. This is in line with how shops would normally manage their customers and enforcement is of course a last resort.

You can read the Health Secretary’s full statement here – – and details for how to make a face covering can be found here –

To help amplify this message to customers and employees, please do share this tweet from the Department for Health & Social Care:

2) Disposing of business waste (including PPE and face coverings)

New guidance on how to dispose of your personal or business waste, including face coverings and personal protective equipment (PPE), during the coronavirus pandemic has been published here:

Key details include:

  • Provide extra bins for your staff and customers to throw away their waste face coverings and PPE used for social distancing, and any other additional waste, such as takeaway packaging and disposable tableware;
  • Make sure that staff and customers do not put face coverings and PPE in a recycling bin as they cannot be recycled through conventional recycling facilities;
  • Make sure bins are emptied often so they do not overflow and create litter;
  • You can put used disposable face coverings and PPE in an ‘offensive waste’ collection (yellow bags with a black stripe), if you have one; and
  • Ask your waste contractor if there is anything else you need to do.

3) Eat Out to Help Out registration: Registration closes on 31 August.

Restaurants and other establishments serving food for on-premises consumption can now register for the Eat Out to Help Out scheme. 

You can register if your establishment:

  • Sells food for immediate consumption on the premises;
  • Provides its own dining area or shares a dining area with another establishment for eat-in meals; and
  • Was registered as a food business with the relevant local authority on or before 7 July.

For further details and to register your business please visit: Registration will close on 31 August.

4) DfE Virtual Jobs Fair

The Department for Education is holding another Virtual Jobs Fair next week and would really appreciate your support to promote job, apprenticeship and volunteering opportunities in your area across social media. I have attached a toolkit and you can download assets that will provide you with details about how it works, and how to get involved.

  • If you post on social media, please tag in @HMGMidlands or @HMGEast and use the tracked links ly/32mMDSi or
  • We’re really trying to bring the event to life for jobseekers so please encourage any employers on your network to get involved and be proactive to facilitate online conversations about their opportunities
  • Use the assets to create content on your own channels
  • Look out for and share content from the National Careers Service channels and @HMGMidlands or @HMGEast
  • If you know anyone or are part of any community groups that would benefit from this, please feel free to share with them too