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House of Commons Chamber proceedings during the COVID-19 pandemic

Temporary arrangements are currently in place until 3 November 2020 to enable some MPs who have self-certified as unable to attend Westminster for medical or public health reasons related to the pandemic to participate remotely.

In response to the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic, temporary arrangements to enable hybrid proceedings were agreed by the House of Commons on 21 and 22 April 2020, and had effect until 20 May 2020. During this time the House of Commons met on Mondays, Tuesdays and Wednesdays.

From 2 June 2020, following the Whitsun recess, the House of Commons returned to a socially distanced form of physical proceedings, in line with public health guidance. On 4 June 2020, the House of Commons agreed to allow some MPs to take part in some proceedings remotely. These temporary arrangements came into force on 8 June 2020 and now have effect until 3 November 2020.

All MPs, whether participating physically or virtually, should follow guidance on the courtesies and rules of the House, such as abiding by a formal dress code.

Timeline of temporary arrangements 

  • 21 April - MPs could participate in oral questions, urgent questions and ministerial statements under temporary arrangements for hybrid proceedings (originally effective until 12 May 2020).
  • 22 April - MPs could also participate in a range of substantive business under temporary arrangements for hybrid proceedings (originally effective until 12 May 2020).
  • 12 May - Temporary arrangements for hybrid proceedings extended until 20 May 2020.
  • 20 May - Temporary arrangements for hybrid proccedings lapse ahead of Whitsun recess.
  • 2 June - MPs return to Westminster following the Whitsun recess to take part in proceedings in the Chamber with social distancing measures in place, in line with public health guidance.
  • 4 June - Some MPs can take part in some proceedings remotely (oral questions, urgent questions and ministerial statements). Remote participation extends only to MPs who have self-certified as unable to attend Westminster for medical or public health reasons related to the pandemic (originally effective from 8 June until 7 July 2020).
  • 10 June - Proxy voting scheme extended to include MPs who have self-certified as unable to attend Westminster for medical or public health reasons related to the pandemic.
  • 1 July - Temporary arrangements agreed on 2 and 4 June extended until 2 September 2020.
  • 2 September - Temporary arrangements agreed on 2 and 4 June extended until 3 November 2020.