Plan B coronavirus measures announced
The Government has announced new COVID restrictions, including a requirement to work from home if possible and the introduction of vaccine passports for large events. I don’t believe that there is sufficient scientific justification for these new measures, and I will be voting against the regulations when they come before Parliament.
Thanks to our phenomenal vaccination roll out, 95% of UK adults now have COVID antibodies, 89% of those 12+ have had their first dose, 81% their second and over 36% their booster. People came forward for the first and second doses – and are now coming forward for booster jabs – because they understand vaccines give us the protection needed to be able to end restrictions and go back to normality.
There will always be new COVID variants – that’s how viruses work – so if we don’t get back to normal now, there’s a danger that we never will.
As we’ve seen over the last 20 months, lockdowns and restrictions cause significant harm. I’m deeply concerned about the impact on these new restrictions, especially on vulnerable people, as I made clear in my question to the Health Secretary, Sajid Javid.
COVID-19 Update - December 9
This morning, the think-tank Bright Blue published polling showing that 11% of those working from home during the pandemic experienced domestic abuse, compared to just 1% of those not working from home, and that 27% of disabled home workers reported domestic abuse in the same period.
What assessment has my right hon. Friend made of the physical, emotional and psychological cost of this work from home mandate to some of the most vulnerable women in our communities?
Sajid Javid, Health Secretary
"My hon. Friend is absolutely right to point to the non-COVID impact of these measures, which I mentioned earlier. She is right to point to emotional distress and mental health issues, but I hope she agrees that, for the reasons I set out earlier, if we do not take these measures, the impact on the very people about whom she rightly cares deeply could be especially challenging."
Details of the proposed new measures can find here.