Business advice and support relating to Covid-19
We understand that business owners will have many questions in these uncertain times. This page is for business and voluntary organisations with questions or concerns about regulatory matters. General advice from Cornwall Council can be found on the Information about Coronavirus (Covid-19) page.
We are following the Government roadmap
We are currently at Step 4 of the roadmap out of lockdown. The Government has further eased limits on social contact, enabling the public to make informed personal decisions.
It will remain important for people to consider the risks for themselves, taking into account whether they and those they meet have been vaccinated or are at greater risk.
The majority of the legal restrictions relating to coronavirus have lifted from 19 July 2021. However, cases are continuing to rise nationally and further transmission, hospitalisations and deaths are expected. There has also been a significant increase in the number of people being contacted by NHS Test and Trace, as a result of the high transmissibility of the Delta variant. This is posing an issue for businesses in the region who suddenly find that too many of their workforce are having to self-isolate for them to remain open.
Follow the Governments Working Safely guidance
While many legal requirements have lifted businesses should still be managing the risk from COVID 19, this will help ensure the safety of customers and staff as well as maintain business continuity.
You must have a COVID 19 risk assessment and implement appropriate controls. Your controls should consider:-
- Ventialtion of premises
- Use of face coverings
- Social Distancing
- Cleaning, hygiene and handwashing
Ventilation and air conditioning during the pandemic
The HSE's ventilation and air conditioning guidance includes advice on:
- balancing ventilation with keeping people warm.
- how to improve ventilation.
- ventilation in vehicles.
Pop up guide
Camping is a popular choice for some tourists. We want people coming to Cornwall to have a good experience. This means ensuring businesses take measures to ensure the safety of their guests. We have produced a guide for those planning on opening pop up camping sites.
Collecting Contact Details
You are no longer legally required to collect contact details, however doing so will help to support NHS Test and Trace to reduce the spread of the virus. You can enable people to check in by providing an NHS QR code poster, though you do not have to ask customers to check in or turn them away if they refuse. If you display an NHS QR code, you should also have a system to collect (and securely store) names and contact details for those who ask to check in but do not have the app. You can find more information in the section on reducing risk to customers.
If a member of your staff tests positive for COVID you should identify close contacts in the business and ensure they isolate. It is not currently possible for close contact to test daily and continue working they must isolate away from the business setting at home.
For advice on cleaning where there has been a positive case please refer to the Government Guidance
Lateral Flow Testing (LFT)
Everyone is now able to access twice weekly LFT. Regular staff testing will give the best chance of catching cases early, avoiding a workplace outbreak and continuing to operate as normal, we would encourage all businesses to use the testing as part of their management of COVID risks. More information is available on the Cornwall Council website.
Many established food businesses have diversified into food delivery, takeaway or online sales. This is in order to continue operating during COVID-19. There has also been an increase in people cooking from home and selling food locally or online.
Remember you need to register your food business with your Local Authority and also update them on any significant changes to your business. You can register online here and please contact us by email to update of any significant operational changes to firstname.lastname@example.org
The council’s Business Regulatory Support service has developed take away and delivery guidance. This will answer most questions on how to make alterations to your business model in a safe and compliant manner.
Further information has been published regarding food delivery and take away. This has been issued by the Chartered Institute of Environmental Health.
Businesses may start to operate a takeaway service and also offer alcohol with those meals. If so, they should check their premises licence permits ‘off sales’. If they are delivering alcohol they must also check there are no conditions that prohibit this. Businesses cannot serve hot food and drinks after 11pm without a Late Night Refreshment Licence.
The Food Standards Agency are offering support and guidance to established and new businesses to help address the challenges of the COVID-19 pandemic.
The Food Standards Agency have prepared advice on food safety for community cooking and food banks, including guidance on how to safely redistribute surplus food: Hygiene and allergy advice for individuals and groups preparing meals to share in their community.
Concerns re COVID safety
The Trading Standards team have been made aware of a number of Covid-19 related scams. More information on these scams and the support available can be found on the Cornwall Council website.
Further advice and support
- The Government have updated guidance for people planning to get married or form a civil partnership in England.
- Government guidance for employees, employers and businesses.
- The Growth Skills Hub has up-to-date signposting of the latest initiatives and provisions. It is intended to help businesses through these unprecedented circumstances.
- The FSB are offering advice and guidance for small businesses and the self-employed.
- Technical cleaning advice from European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control.
- The Business Companion website has advice that could be helpful for businesses that are diversifying. (For example, starting to sell meat, or fruit and veg. Where there are specific provisions relating to weights and measures and labelling).
- Institute of Food Science and Technology have created a Knowledge Hub, with many useful resources for food businesses.
- The Office for Product Safety and Standards have released this guidance for Businesses:
- The CIPD have produced a guide to help you plan your organisation’s next steps following a period of furlough. It includes guidance for once lockdown measures start easing.
- Government guidance on the cleaning of non-healthcare settings.
- The CTSI have produced some guides. These provide clear guidance for:
- travel and tour operators
- food businesses
- the housing and home improvement sector