By Leah Conway
In National news, it’s looking like Leicester will be the first city to officially go into local lockdown, which poses questions of what is meant by a local lockdown and will it even work?
The city of Leicester has recently seen a spike in coronavirus cases. There have been local outbreaks at food production facilities and also schools, which have had to be temporarily closed down.
With Kirklees currently dealing with its own factory related outbreak, some have been worried what a localised lockdown could mean for the area.
The Government addressed Leicester’ spike in cases in a recent statement.
Home Secretary Priti Patel, speaking on BBC One’s The Andrew Marr Show, said: “There will be support going into Leicester and in fact the health secretary was in touch with many of us over the weekend explaining some of the measures, the support on testing, resources that will go into the local authority as well.”
In late May, Health Secretary Matt Hancock said that local lockdowns would be used when there are ‘flare-ups’ in localised areas.
Mr Hancock assured that there was a planned system for when these local spikes happened.
Prime Minister Boris Johnson also stated that there would be a “Whack-a-mole strategy” in tackling local spikes in coronavirus while continuing to ease the national lockdown.
However, many aspects of what a local lockdown could mean, and if it will work, remains unclear.
For one, the geographical boundaries of a local lockdown will be complicated to define.
Will a local lockdown be defined by an exact location of the outbreak, in this case, for example, a factory or a school, or will it be determined by postcode or even a whole area?
Another concern of local politicians and councils is that they do not have the power to enforce local lockdowns. They can shut down premises but how local councils will enforce a lockdown on their city or town is not yet clear.
It’s one thing applying a local lockdown, but it’s another thing enforcing it effectively.
Further guidance to local councils should follow shortly.
There have been a few examples of local lockdowns in other countries such as Germany and China.
In Germany, some districts have had their previous lockdown measures re-imposed. Public places like bars, cinemas and gyms have been closed, and residents have been asked not to travel to other districts.
How the UK will enforce local lockdowns is yet to be clear, once again it may have to heavily rely on an appeal to the residents of such areas to follow local and national government advice.
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5 months ago
On this week's episode of the Business Programme, Liz Hey is joined by Founder Andy Howarth and General Manager Natalie Wells, of The Howarth Foundation.
The Howarth Foundation help the most vulnerable in our society gain employment in a variety of sectors.
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