Operators of council buildings will have discretion over when they consider it safe to open for activities permitted by legislation and may decide to remain closed at this stage if they are not able to safely facilitate the relevant guidelines.
The COVID-19: Guidance for the safe use of council buildings makes it clear that acitivites must be risk assessed and that meetings should continue to be held remotely where possible.
Where it is not possible for employees to work from home, operators need to make sure that council buildings can be operated safely during the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.
Guidance has been published on how to work safely.
For meetings, the Guidance states that where meetings can take place digitally, without the need for face-to-face contact, they should do so. Where council buildings need to be used for physical meetings, these meetings must be managed within the social distancing guidance and principles set out.
Multi-use community buildings
COVID-19: Guidance for the safe use of multi-purpose community facilities is for those managing multi-use community facilities to prepare for re-opening when restrictions have lifted. It signposts to relevant guidance on a range of different activities that can take place in these spaces.
Currently, community centres are closed except where they are used to provide permitted activities as set out in the premises closure guidance.
Many community facilities are also workplaces and those responsible for the premises should therefore be aware of their responsibilities as employers.
This guidance will be updated as we move into the next step for easing restrictions and when other guidance relevant to multi-use facilities are produced.