Boris Johnson will insist there is “no alternative” to the nationwide lockdown as he addresses the House of Commons on Monday amid mounting anger among Conservative MPs, after ministers approved the new “stay at home” order could be extended beyond December 2.
The Prime Minister will tell Parliament that without the new strict measures, this will happen It goes into effect across England on Thursday, Coronavirus deaths during the winter season could be “double or worse” than in the first wave.
He will promise that the government will “seek to ease” the restrictions when the measures are due to end. However, Cabinet Secretary Michael Gove made it clear on Sunday They can be left in place If they don’t reduce the infection rate enough.
“We have a period of four weeks, during which we will review progress, but of course we will always be driven by data. We will always make a decision in the national interest, based on the evidence,” Goff said.
After I came under pressure from Sophie Ridge on Sky News about whether that meant the procedures could be extended, he said, “Yes.”
Sage member Jeremy Farrar, chair of the Wellcome Trust, echoed Gove’s warning, saying it’s important not to be too “firm” about the December 2 expiration date.
He said if the infection rate, hospitalization rate and other key metrics have not decreased enough by then, measures should be extended. “It is much better to do it than to remove those restrictions and then impose stricter restrictions over Christmas or soon in the new year,” he told the Andrew Marr program on BBC One.
The latest official data showed that on Sunday, 23,254 people had tested positive for Covid-19 in the UK. And another 162 people died within 28 days of a positive test result.
Johnson will put his plan to Parliament after a chaotic weekend that saw his dramatic announcement After a leak on Friday evening, Causing a shock among his deputies.
Amid expectations that the economy could be hit by up to 10% as a result of the new restrictions, the Bank of England is preparing to announce a fresh cash injection into the economy later this week.
The city had expected Threadneedle Street to resume quantitative easing even before the new shutdown was announced, but now it sees a new support package as inevitable.
The Treasury Department plans to announce more generous support for the self-employed yet Leave scheme continuation Staff, but no further action is currently planned by the advisor, Rishi Sunak.
Gerrard Lyons, who was Johnson’s chief economic advisor when he was mayor of London, said the shutdown was “terrible news” for the economy, which he said could shrink by as much as 10%.
“This shutdown will ensure that much of the economy is in agony and will require massive new incentives and assistance,” Lyons said.
Sunak had previously resisted a nationwide lockdown amid concerns about its economic cost, but signed the plan in the face of The risk of overcrowding in hospitals Within weeks without taking action.
“If you have the NHS that won’t work, people won’t run away from shopping, they’ll stay home. The economy is collapsing anyway – and people are losing faith in the government.”
Sonak’s sudden decision to extend the leave scheme, which pays 80% of workers’ wages in affected firms, was met with intense anger among northern mayors, who repeatedly urged him to follow the same approach when cities, including Manchester and Liverpool, were facing strict Tier III restrictions. . Last month.
“Millions woke up this morning knowing that the prime minister of this country thinks the north is less valuable than the south,” said Steve Rotherham, Liverpool The mayor of the city district said. “Quite frankly, the government treated us scorned again.”
Andy BurnhamThe Mayor of Greater Manchester has called for an end to the government’s “preferential treatment” for people with low wages and “people in the north versus people in the south”.
Conservative MPs also lined up to criticize the government’s approach on Sunday. Sir Graham Brady, 1922 committee chair, told BBC Radio 4 that he would vote against government shutdown measures in the vote on Wednesday.
Former Brexit Minister David Davis said he feared the lockdown would continue until spring, as the virus returns.
“In March, let’s hope this lasts only four weeks, and it has lasted four months. My firm belief this time is that it will last six months. Because when it comes to December 2 and R remains 1.5, which will be, because this lockdown will hold less From the previous one, he will have to continue. “
He said countries that have aggressively followed a “test, trace and isolate” approach, including drastic measures such as closing borders and separating those who have tested positive from their families in isolation, have managed to successfully control it.
Another former cabinet minister said they believed the ministers had no choice but to act, but the “chaos” that occurred over the weekend “might cost us dearly in the elections.”
Former minister George Freeman said he would support the government – but only on the basis of a clear strategy that would see more power handed over to local leaders to balance health and economic risks in their areas in the future.
Representatives will be given a vote on the measures on Wednesday, before they come into effect – but they will likely be passed with Labor support, even if it’s a large number of Governors Insurgent.
Shadow Health Secretary Jonathan Ashworth will urge the government to use the four-week lockdown period to fix deficiencies in the testing and tracking system.
It will demand more comprehensive “retroactive” contact tracing to determine the source of the outbreaks, and urge the government to use new saliva-based test kits to conduct weekly screening of workers at high risk.
These should include NHS employees, as well as other workers at risk such as those in education, transportation, retail and hospitality, Ashworth suggests.
He said, “Coronavirus is increasing fiercely and urgent action is needed to bring R to less than 1 nationwide, which is why the Labor Party has urged Boris Johnson to take advantage of the mid-term holiday opportunity to get a limited-time” circular break “
“This hasn’t happened, and testing and tracing have been overwhelmed. Controlling Covid-19 relies on fixing the tracer, ensuring rapid switching of tests and introducing regular weekly tests to identify the 70% of carriers of the virus who may not be showing symptoms but can still spread the virus.”
Speaking to MPs, Johnson will stand by his decision not to shut down England as early as the science advisers recommended in September – an option Labor claims would cost lives.
“I know some people at home thought we should have reached this decision earlier, but I think it was right to try every possible option to control this virus at the local level, through strong local measures and strong local leadership,” a minister expects that Says.