After Lockdown – Guidance for Mosques in Wales
The following guidance is for mosques and Muslims in Wales to understand the Alert Level 0 rules and to worship safely. The new rules will come into force on 7th August 2021.
1. Know the New Rules
– There will be no legal limits on the number of people who can meet (indoors or outdoors)
– Social distancing will no longer be a legal requirement
– Risk Assessments for open venues remain mandatory
– Anyone with COVID symptoms should self-isolate and get tested.
– Face coverings will continue to be a legal requirement in indoor public places,
2. Review and Update Risk Assessments
It is legally necessary for mosques to have an update to date risk assessment that reflects Alert Level 0 and current infection rates. Review and update your risk assessment.
3. Be Clear Face Masks Remain Mandatory
Wales will continue to mandate face masks indoors including places of worship. Communicate this to your worshippers. While face masks are uncomfortable, they will help ensure that the spread of coronavirus continues to drop.
4. Ventilation – Keep It Flowing
One of the most effective things you can do to reduce the risk of coronavirus is to increase ventilation (fresh air being introduced to the mosque). Find a strategy to keep air flowing in the mosque, even when it is cold.
5. Decide and Implement Other Reasonable Measures
Alert Level 0 means that there are very few rules that must be followed, instead, the responsibility is on individual mosques to implement “reasonable measures” to reduce the risk posed by Coronavirus. Decide and implement reasonable measures based on your individuals’ needs.
Examples of reasonable measures include: –
Eliminating the Risk:
- Regular LFT for imams and teachers (these can be ordered from the Welsh Government website (https://gov.wales/get-rapid-lateral-flow-covid-19-tests-if-you-do-not-have-symptoms)
- Keeping well managed “track and trace” records
Reducing the Risk:
- Managing the number of people present in confined spaces (i.e. toilets, kitchens, corridors) using one-way systems and signage.
- Clear signage and guidance for worshippers in attendance to follow.
- Consider holding two Friday prayers, one with social distancing, in order to facilitate worship for individuals at high risk from coronavirus.
Managing the Risk:
- Continuing to encourage handwashing, providing sanitation stations
- Maintaining a regular cleaning schedule of shared spaces.
- Encouraging individuals maintaining 2m distance except when necessary
6. Review Measures As Circumstances Change
Consider implementing new measures if infection rates increase or there are any outbreaks amongst congregants or staff. The situation is fluid.