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Cash allowance scheme set

(To watch the full press conference with sign language interpretation, click here.)   The Government will launch a three-year Cash Allowance Trial Scheme in late June to alleviate the livelihood difficulties faced by grassroots families who have been waiting for public rental housing for a long time.   At a press conference this afternoon, Permanent Secretary for Transport & Housing (Housing)/Director of Housing Agnes Wong said the cash allowance is not a rent subsidy and the recipients are not required to use it to pay for rent.   “This is purely to relieve their financial pressure while waiting for public rental housing.      “We aim to send out around 90,000 application forms to the eligible applicants by the end of this month. We urge them to complete the form and return it to us as soon as possible.”   The cash allowance amount is determined by the number of people in a public rental housing application who meet all eligibility criteria.   Along with other criteria

Quarantine measures to be adjusted

The Government today said it will adjust the quarantine arrangements for people who have stayed in overseas places other than those that are extremely high-risk and very high-risk under the vaccine bubble concept.   Answering lawmakers’ questions at the Legislative Council, Secretary for Food & Health Prof Sophia Chan noted that some places are considering or have announced the reduction or lifting of quarantine for vaccinated people as COVID-19 vaccination rates around the world are rapidly increasing.   She explained that the Government made the decision after considering that the epidemic situation in certain places have stabilised and pose lower public health risks.   After the adjustment, the basic boarding and quarantine requirements will remain unchanged for high-risk and medium-risk places, ie Group B and Group C specified places.   New arrangements will be applied to fully vaccinated people who have stayed in these places to shorten their compulsory quarantine period from 21 days to 14 days under the vaccine bubble concept.   The compulsory quarantine period for fully vaccinated people who have stayed in low-risk Group D specified places, ie Singapore, Australia and New Zealand, will also be shortened from 14 days to seven days.   These people will be required to self-monitor for seven days and undergo compulsory testing after completing their shortened quarantine.   Meanwhile, the Government is implementing the COVID-19 Vaccination Programme at full speed.   A higher vaccination rate will give Hong Kong better leverage to negotiate with other places on the arrangements for resuming cross-boundary travel, Prof Chan emphasised.   She said the Government has started to consider procuring the next generation of COVID-19 vaccines to plan for the next phase of the vaccination programme, adding that the protection power of the vaccines against mutant virus strains is an important factor when considering to authorise and procure COVID-19 vaccines in the future.
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