Local action to tackle coronavirus in Leicester30 June 2020
Health Secretary Matt Hancock gave a statement in Parliament yesterday evening outlining the need for Leicester and some of its surrounding areas to reinforce lockdown measures for the next few weeks. Although not the first time the government has taken local action, this is perhaps the most severe. Lockdown measures will not ease for Leicester on 4th July, non-essential shops must close from today and schools will close from Thursday -except to vulnerable children and children of key workers. This will be a huge blow to many businesses, particularly bars, restaurants and hairdressers preparing to open at the weekend.
In the statement, he said he had chaired a Local Action Committee Gold meeting yesterday to discuss the infection-rate in Leicester, where it is reported to be 3 times higher than the next highest city.
Leicester accounts for around 10% of all positive cases in the country over the past week. And admissions to hospital are between 6 and 10 per day rather than around 1 a day at other trusts. Key measures they have put in place now include:
- extra mobile testing units in Leicester
- extra funding for councils to communicate lockdown measures
- help for councils to support those self-isolating
- assistance to implement more stringent COVID-secure workplaces where relevant
Lockdown measures will not ease for Leicester on 4th July, non-essential shops must close from today and schools will close from Thursday. Mr Hancock added: “We recommend to people in Leicester, stay at home as much as you can and we recommend against all but essential travel to, from and within Leicester.”