Shielding is ending, but support is still available
As part of the Government’s roadmap to ease coronavirus restrictions, residents who are shielding will no longer need to shield from 1 April onwards.
If you’ve been shielding, the easing of these restrictions means that you can begin to follow the national restrictions alongside the rest of the population.
However, it’s advised that you take extra precautions to help keep yourself as safe as possible, including continuing to follow social distancing guidelines, limiting social contact to reduce the risk of transmission, getting vaccinated and working from home if possible.
If you’ve been shielding and haven’t yet had your vaccination, please contact your GP.
If you need to leave your home to work, or if you live with other people who leave home to work, volunteer or go to school or college then it’s important that you get tested for coronavirus twice a week, even if you’ve had your vaccination or you feel well.
You can pick up a free home rapid testing kit, which will give you a result in 30 minutes, from one of our rapid test sites:
- Chalmers Bequest, Edwards Lane, Stoke Newington, N16 0JJ
- Geffrye Estate Community Hall, Falkirk Street, N1 6SD
- Maurice Bishop House, 17 Reading Lane, London E8 1DS (off Mare Street)
- Homerton Library, Homerton High St, Homerton, London E9 6AS
Rapid home test kits will also shortly be available to pick up at local pharmacies. If you have any questions about the home test kits including how to use them and where to submit your results please watch this how to guide on home test kits. You can also call the Here to Help Helpline (020 8356 3111) if you have any questions.
Alternatively you can book a test at your local rapid test site.
If you’re unable to get to one of our test sites to take your test or collect your test kit, you can also order a home testing kit.
The NHS has written to residents, outlining advice and support available.
We understand that many shielding residents may be feeling anxious about starting to venture out again, or returning to work if they’re unable to work from home.
If you’ve been shielding, it may help to ease yourself into going out again, such as by taking short walks in local open spaces and parks and going to supermarkets early in the morning.
You may also wish to continue to use online delivery for food and prescriptions, or to rely on friends, family, neighbours or volunteers to help with food shopping, collecting medications or other errands.
If you have a supermarket priority slot, this will continue until 21 June. After that date, you’ll be able to continue to book individual slots.
Support is still available in Hackney for residents in need – alternatively, you can call our Here to Help phone line on 020 8356 3111, 9am-5pm, Monday to Friday.