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Boris Johnson Lifts Wide Variety of Coronavirus Restrictions in UK

“Almost as eagerly expected as a pint,” he said, ”will be a haircut, especially by me.”

Under the new plan, hairdressers in England will be able to open, as will places of worship, movie theaters, and concert halls, though they will not be allowed to stage live performances. Gyms, pools and nightclubs will remain closed.

While several countries have reduced their social distancing rules, the evidence of the effect is still open to debate. The World Health Organization advises people to keep a distance of “at least one meter,” while the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention in the United States recommends that they stay “at least six feet,” or two meters, apart.

“It will be much riskier to go to one meter,” said Susan Michie, a professor of health psychology at University College London, who is a member of the government advisory panel. “If the government were honest with the public, they would say, ‘This is a riskier strategy, but we’re taking it anyway because of economic reasons.’”

Indeed, other parts of Britain are diverging from England. Scotland, Wales, and Northern Ireland are making their own decisions on when to ease the lockdown, with Scotland and Wales moving more slowly than England.

Mr. Johnson is expected to announce further measures this week to loosen the country’s 14-day quarantine on visitors by negotiating quarantine-free travel corridors between Britain and several European countries. That comes after intense lobbying from the embattled airline and tourism industries.

Britain imposed its lockdown in late March, far later than its neighbors, and it has been more cautious about lifting it, in part because it suffered one of the worst outbreaks of any Western country. Nearly 43,000 people have died; Mr. Johnson himself survived a serious bout of Covid-19, the disease caused by the virus.

Source: NYT > World News

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