Residents in Feltham and Heston will be aware that the Government has announced that England would be returning to lockdown from Thursday. I will be supporting this vote on Wednesday as this will save lives and clearly protect our NHS.
I know from my many who have contacted me the local concern there is about the rise in infections, hospital admissions and – tragically – the number of deaths. Below is the latest set of local and national numbers.
In mid-September, SAGE called for 2-3 week circuit breaker amid concerns for rising numbers, to bring the virus under control.
On October 12th, the minutes of that meeting were leaked.
On October 13th, Labour called on the Prime Minister to act early – a short sharp lockdown over the half term week could have helped stop the virus getting out of control and would have been over by next Monday.
It would have given the Government’s seriously underperforming track and trace system a chance to catch up. Local track and trace is far outperforming the national scheme at the moment.
On the day in September when SAGE called for the lockdown, there were 11 deaths from Covid 19 and there were just over 4,000 Covid infections.
On Saturday, this had increased to 326 deaths and 22,000 Covid cases.
In Hounslow, there were 487 cases in the last week, 3,529 have been recorded in total, and 242 coronavirus-related deaths have been registered.
We have lost vital time.
As a result, this lockdown will be longer than it needed to be – at least four weeks – it will be harder, we’ve just missed half-term, and the human cost will be higher.
On Sunday I called for the Government to make sure that financial support was extended as quickly as possible.
Local businesses need this to be able to plan ahead and to save jobs.
As we are entering similar level of restrictions to the first lockdown, we need similar levels of economic support now.
There were huge holes and gaps in the Government’s support packages in the first lockdown, particularly for many self-employed. Furlough was extended to Dec 2nd – 6 HOURS before it was due to end.
Some support has now been announced for the self-employed but we know that gaps remain.
I have also been in contact with Hounslow Council this week, who are working hard to ensure that once the details of the business grants scheme are finalised by the Government, local businesses will be able to apply and get the support they need.
If you run a business in Hounslow, you should sign-up to the Council’s business e-newsletter which will be used to notify businesses about developments and when applications go live. The sign-up link is https://public.govdelivery.com/accounts/UKHOUNSLOW/subscriber/new?qsp=UKHOUNSLOW_5
If you have any concerns about the economic support available, please contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org