The new restrictions will no doubt have a major impact on local businesses without, in my opinion, helping to repair the damage that has already been inflicted by the pandemic.
You will not be surprised to hear that my inboxes have been inundated with correspondence conveying people’s personal views on this as well as various petitions to keep certain businesses and establishments open during the lockdown which have been deemed ‘non-essential’.
I fully recognise that businesses and establishments, including gyms, sports venues and places of worship, in my constituency, and indeed across the whole country, have worked extremely hard to demonstrate that they can operate in a Covid-secure way. It seems illogical, therefore, to come away from the three-tiered local COVID Alert Level system and go back into a second total lockdown. It is incredibly sad to have seen a recent rise in hospital admissions due to Covid but I hold the view that this can continue to be managed with the local and regional approach, which has allowed us to achieve a balance between protecting public health and minimising the impact to the economy and people’s mental health.
As you may be aware, on Wednesday 4th November I voted against the motion to impose a second national lockdown. Unfortunately, my attempts to stop another blanket lockdown were thwarted due to the lack of support.
However, I previously made a commitment to my constituents that I would revoke any proposal for a further lockdown and I hope my actions have fulfilled that promise.
Finally, just for clarification, the motion was unamendable, but the Government seems to be listening and they are changing some of the regulations.
Thank you again for taking the time to contact me.