People wearing face masks at Marine Terrace on Sep 16, 2020. (Photo: Try Sutrisno Foo) SINGAPORE: The current size of group gatherings allowed will be reduced from five people to two people, following a spike in COVID-19 community cases, said co-chair of the multi-ministry task force Lawrence Wong on Friday (May 14).
This, and other new measures under what the Health Ministry labelled as "Phase 2 (Heightened Alert)" will take effect from May 16 through Jun 13. Speaking at a multi-ministry task force press conference on Friday, Mr Wong said: “This will apply across the board, so if you want to go out for anything, grocery shopping, exercise, maximum of two persons henceforth. “In fact, we strongly encourage everyone to stay home as much as possible, go out only for essential reasons. “We will do a review at the midway point, meaning two weeks after the measures have been implemented, and at that point, we will look at the prevailing public health situation and see if there’s a need to adjust the measures further,” said Mr Wong, who is also Education Minister. Responding to questions about whether Singapore could enter another “circuit breaker” after the midpoint review, Mr Wong said: “If indeed the situation does not improve, we certainly will not rule out even more stringent measures thereafter. “But there is also a chance that things may improve, and therefore, we may also consider the other way around, easing some of the restrictions.” “We are in a stage of heightened alert. I would urge everyone to be vigilant and minimise unnecessary social interactions,” said Health Minister Gan Kim Yong. “We need to act decisively to disrupt the virus transmission. We will therefore further tighten safe management measures in the community” DINING-IN SUSPENDED, WORK-FROM-HOME AS DEFAULT Dining-in at F&B establishments will also not be allowed, said Mr Wong. This includes hawker centres and food courts, both indoors and outdoors. “We will take tighter measures around the higher-risk settings, and these higher-risk settings are the ones where people are gathered together in an indoor environment without their masks on,” said Mr Wong. “All dining-in will have to cease … All F&B establishments will only be able to offer takeaway and delivery options. In line with this, wedding banquets will also have to cease because it’s a dining activity.” Working from home will also be the default at workplaces, he added. “All employees who are able to work from home will have to do so. Work-from-home will be the default.” Full story at Channel News Asia