UK Home Secretary Priti Patel on Wednesday said that starting from June 8, people arriving in the country will have to go into self-isolation at a designated address for 14 days as a condition of being allowed through frontier posts.
Amid criticism from opposition politicians, Patel insisted that the measure was proportionate and was aimed at preventing COVID-19 being brought into the UK from other countries at a time when coronavirus cases were falling, according to the reports.
Last month, Patel had said passengers would need to provide their contact and travel information so they can be traced if infections arise.
They could also be contacted regularly during the whole quarantine and face random checks from public health authorities, she added,
Patel said in her statement to Parliament that the government understands how tough the public health measures to prevent a second wave of coronavirus are for this sector, noting that it will continue to work closely with companies and carriers.
“We will tomorrow (Thursday) host a roundtable to work across the travel sector and the broader business sector as well on how we can innovate and move forward together,” she said, adding that “a long-term plan” for the industry will be formed.
“These measures are backed by the science, supported by the public, and essential to save lives… We will all suffer in the long run if we get this wrong. That’s why it’s crucial that we introduce these measures now,” said the Secretary.
Earlier on Wednesday, Prime Minister Boris Johnson came under fire from main opposition leader Keir Starmer over the government’s handling of the COVID-19 pandemic.
The labour minister has said that this was a critical week in the UK’s response to COVID-19 as lockdown measures were eased with many schools reopening.
Earlier, the Prime Minister in par, while speaking in parliament for the first time since he himself was hospitalised with coronavirus, had said that the government would review the data and he would set out the next steps.
The country is now the third-most affected in the world behind the United States and Italy on cumulative deaths, after changing its reporting to include community as well as hospital deaths.
The UK has so far registered 281,270 COVID-19 cases, with 39,811 deaths, the highest number of fatalities in Europe.