Coronavirus: 40% of Brits still don't feel safe meeting someone not in their household

Joe Gamp
·Contributor, Yahoo News UK
·3-min read
 People in a queue practise social distancing as they wait to be served at an outdoor market stall during the coronavirus crisis. The UK government relaxed the guidelines on coronavirus lockdown, allowing people to spend more time outdoor as the death rate continues to drop. (Photo by Keith Mayhew / SOPA Images/Sipa USA)
A new poll shows 40% of Brits across the UK feel unsafe meeting people from outside their own households. (Sipa Images)

A large portion of Brits still don’t feel safe when meeting someone from another household over fears about coronavirus, according to a new survey.

The poll, published by the Office for National Statistics as part of their weekly Lifestyle and Opinions survey, seeks to measure the impact of COVID-19 on the habits of people, households and communities across the UK.

New data - formed from the responses of 1,224 people surveyed between 28 -31 May 2020 - comes as restrictions are gradually eased in England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland - with all four nations’ rules for meeting friends and family differing from each other.

In England, groups of six people from different households are allowed to meet outdoors, providing social distancing is maintained inline with government advice.

(Office for National Statistics)
(Office for National Statistics)

But the latest survey on day-to-day life during the pandemic showed 40% of respondents across the UK still felt unsafe meeting people from outside their own households.

Around 6 in 10 adults (60%) in Britain felt safe when meeting with someone outside of their household outdoors.

Feelings of safety also varied between the different types of activities based outside of the home.

Around 46.5% of people said they felt comfortable when taking part in outdoor leisure activities - but only 1 in 3 (36%) said they felt safe when visiting garden centres.

In the last seven days, almost 9 in 10 adults (87%) said they had enough information about how to protect themselves from the coronavirus (COVID-19) - a steady increase from the 79% recorded last week.

And 3 in 10 adults (28%) reported that they had used face coverings outside of their home in the past week, a similar proportion to last week (29%).

A person reads an information booklet on coronavirus sent to every UK household from the the UK Government, as the UK continues in lockdown to help curb the spread of the coronavirus. Picture date: Wednesday April 15, 2020.
People are still concerned about the spread of coronavirus as the UK continues to gradually ease lockdown restrictions. (PA)

It follows an ONS survey released at the end of May, which showed fewer Brits were worrying about the general impact of coronavirus on society.

The survey, covering the period from 21 May to 24 May, 67% of people said they were very or somewhat worried about the effect that COVID-19 was having on their life.

Data revealed a 5% drop from the same survey conducted a week before, which showed 72% were worried about coronavirus’ impact.

It also showed how 6 out of 10 adults said the thing that worried them most during the crisis was a lack of freedom and independence.

Coronavirus: what happened today

Click here to sign up to the latest news, advice and information with our daily Catch-up newsletter

Read more about COVID-19

How to get a coronavirus test if you have symptoms
How easing of lockdown rules affects you
In pictures: How UK school classrooms could look in new normal
How public transport could look after lockdown
How our public spaces will change in the future

Help and advice

Read the full list of official FAQs here
10 tips from the NHS to help deal with anxiety
What to do if you think you have symptoms
How to get help if you've been furloughed