The government has confirmed that all businesses should ensure their employees work at home, if at all possible.

Following its announcement yesterday that all non-essential premises must close, the government has published its further guidance here .

Speaking at yesterday's COVID-19 press conference (24 th March), Health Secretary Matt Hancock responded to a question about who employees should listen to when they are being told to go to work when they feel their job isn’t essential and are unable to stay two metres apart.

He said: “The advice is crystal clear. That you should stay at home, unless you have one of the four reasons; exercise, shopping – as little as you have to, for medical reasons, or to go to work where that work can’t be done at home. Employers have a duty of care."

However, he added that if employees are key workers, employed in the NHS or social care, they should continue to go to work because the work is vital to tackle coronavirus.
Additional New Guidance Released:

Apprenticeship programme response:  The Education and Skills Funding Agency is taking steps to ensure that, wherever possible, apprentices can continue and complete their apprenticeship and to support providers during this challenging time. New guidance has been published for apprentices, employers, training providers and assessment organisations.
West Middlesex Hospital request:  

please see attached information above re. Rapid Response Fund. Please donate via:

In addition to the Fund the Hospital needs our help as staff are struggling with the following:

Staff rest hubs – are you able to donate tea/coffee/fruit/biscuits – volunteers will on hand to keep our staff hydrated and fed during their breaks

Staff food banks – milk/eggs/bread/fruit/vegetables/cereal/tinned food/pasta/rice. We are all award of the food shortages in the supermarkets, staff are struggling to get to the shops and when they do there is no food left.

There is a drop off point in the Reception area of West Mid – please do try to help.

PLEASE buy responsibly and give a thought to a nurse/doctor who need to keep healthy to continue to look after us.
Coronavirus - New Legislation with regard to Property - Nicholas Woof, solicitor has more useful advice here
Paul Shaw of Business Doctors is running a free webinar on Wednesday (25 th March): Business Rescue Toolkit, designed specifically for business owners affected by the crisis. It provides practical advice on the actions to take to survive and thrive once the crisis has passed.
Positive Signs:

  • 170,000 people have signed up as volunteers for the NHS after the government’s recent request so increasing total NHS staff by 10%.

  • China has closed down its last coronavirus hospital as there are not enough new cases to support them.

  • Doctors in India have been successful in treating Coronavirus.

  • Apple reopens all 42 China stores

  • Cleveland Clinic developed a COVID-19 test that gives results in hours, not days.

  • Research is taking place in the UK and around the world to develop a vaccine.

  • Good news from South Korea, where the number of new cases is declining.

So it's not all bad news - keep safe
Hounslow Chamber of Commerce is the primary support, networking, and representation organisation in west London for SMEs.

We support the interests, the commercial aspirations and the investment for some 18,000 firms - from Chiswick to Feltham, Heathrow to Osterley and Brentford to Bedfont - the Chamber is the voice for all businesses located in the borough.