On 13th October we wrote about the Coronavirus Local Alert Levels and Yoga Classes (England)
Since then queries have come up about teaching in peoples homes; lets have a look at this. As always, E&OE and this is our interpretation, and it only applies to England. Those in Wales, Scotland or Northern Ireland will need to consider local guidance.
Visiting People at Home for Teaching
The guidance around what can or cannot be done in each Tier is in the following documents:
- Local COVID alert level: medium (aka Tier 1) – detailed guidance
- Local COVID alert level: high (aka Tier 2) – detailed guidance
- Local COVID alert level: very high (aka Tier 3) – detailed guidance
- Under “Exceptions where people from different households can gather in groups larger than 6 people, these include… …for work, volunteering to provide voluntary or charitable services (see guidance on working safely in other people’s homes)”
- “Where a group includes someone covered by such an exception (for example, someone who is working), they are not generally counted as part of the gatherings limit. This means, for example, a tradesperson can go into a household without breaching the limit, if they are there for work.”
This sets the precedent that work can take place in other peoples homes.
- “Where a group includes someone covered by an exception (for example, someone who is working), they are not generally counted as part of the gatherings limit. This means, for example, a tradesperson can go into a household without breaching the limit, if they are there for work.”
The limits referred to in these extracts are around households meeting together and get progressively more strict as you move up through the tiers, regarding numbers and meeting indoors or outside. However in the detailed guidance in all three cases it is clear you can go into someones home for work without breaching the rules.
NB 1 – Does that mean you could invite other people into your clients home and run a class there? Possibly, on strict reading of the rules, however for Tiers 2 and 3 – High Risk and Very High Risk it would be outside the spirit of the rules, if not the detail. To this end we would not recommend this, ethically
NB 2 – Check local restrictions in Tier 3.
There is also a separate document “Guidance for people working in, visiting or delivering to other people’s homes“. We recommend reviewing this. Salient contents are:
- Its says “This guidance applies to those working in, visiting or delivering to home environments. These include, but are not limited to, people working in the following areas:– in home workers – such as repair services, fitters, meter readers, plumbers, cleaners, cooks, visiting childcare providers, and surveyors (this is not an exhaustive list)
– to home services – such as delivery drivers momentarily at the door”
Clearly a visiting Yoga Teacher would fall into the first category, similar to a cleaner who visits for a session of one to two hours.
- It says “This guide applies to COVID Alert Level 1 (Medium). If you’re in an area in COVID Alert Level 2 (High) or 3 (Very High), check local restrictions.” . As far as we are aware there are no local restrictions in Tier 2 / High risk
- Risk assessments are necessary – all businesses should have these to be Covid Secure. Risk Assessments will have to cover each home you visit, eg:
- Does someone high risk or vulnerable live there?
- Is there space for Social Distancing?
- Is the venue safe from your perspective?
- Appropriate sanitation and PPE will be necessary
- You will need to operate Track and Trace and take a mobile QR code
We can take comfort from the above that:
- Home visits are still allowed unless local restrictions prohibit them
- Broadly the approach is similar to running a class in a studio or community venue regarding Covid Secure, Social Distancing, etc
What About Having People in to My Home to Teach?
This is relatively simple – If you teach from your own home then:
- Temporarily the home, or the relevant part, becomes your business premises. This applies even if you don’t have Planning Consent, pay Business Rates or have registered as business premises (and on the latter, there is no register of business premises as such, subject only to the possible planning issues – which we touch on here)
- The rules that then apply are as for any Yoga studio, for example enforcing Social Distancing and Covid Secure (along with the required Risk Assessments)
- The Rule of Six does not apply so long as the group is there for teaching and not socialising – The Six People Rule and Yoga Classes
- Be cautious – if neighbours see large groups visiting your home, it may cause upset and/or complaints, especially in Tiers 2 and 3. Think perceptions.
- Take care that the group isn’t socialising
- Consider local restrictions – if Gyms, Fitness Facilities and Group Classes are required to close in your area, then clearly the same applies to working out of home
It does appear that you can continue to visit peoples homes for both 1 on 1 classes and group classes, and, subject to normal insurance, planning and H&S rules, you could run 1 on 1s or Group Classes in your own home.
However just because you can, it doesn’t mean you should. Do consider the safety of yourself, your clients and their families, and the wider public. Also consider public perceptions and reputation.
If you do decide to visit someone’s home to teach, or have someone visit yours, make sure you adhere to Covid Secure and Social Distancing