“But when it comes to taking a safe distance, it’s really on a spectrum and it depends on our own situation and our own circumstances. ”
On one end of this spectrum are the people you live with – your immediate family, your partner, or your roommates.
For these people, no physical contact restriction is necessary. Hugs and kisses are good and should be given freely for the sake of everyone’s sanity, Henry said.
However, more care should be taken with anyone who is elderly or has a health condition that makes them more susceptible to the new coronavirus, she added.
Not hugging your ‘safe six’
The next step across the spectrum is the “safe six” that health officials have been pushing for the past few weeks. This means a group of six friends or extended family members that is cohesive for everyone involved.
“For your six friends in safety, closer [than two metres] is OK, but no physical contact, so no hugs and kisses with these friends, ”said Henry.
A little closer proximity can also be fine for colleagues and classmates you see on a daily basis in structured work and school environments, as long as you make sure to constantly sit next to the same person, according to Henry.
If you are working in an environment with a larger number of people, however, it is important to stay further away from your coworkers.
At the end of the spectrum are strangers.
“For people that you don’t know or don’t see regularly, maintaining those two meters is extremely important. If you’re outside, it’s less risky than being inside. If you are indoors and you cannot maintain those two meters, this is where wearing a mask is extremely important, ”said Henry.