Government late with lockdown measures say Sadiq Khan and London councils
The Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan, said:
“I am furious that the Government have dithered and delayed yet again.
Their indecision will have unimaginable consequences – both lives and
livelihoods will be lost as a result.
“Acting early and decisively is the best way to control this virus,
which is why I and many others urged the Government to listen to SAGE
and introduce a short, national, circuit breaker weeks ago when it could
have saved lives and done the least damage to our economy. Instead, the
Prime Minister chose to completely ignore the expert, scientific advice.
“The Government’s delay means that case numbers are now too high for a
short, sharp, circuit breaker to be effective. This has left the Prime
Minister with no choice but to introduce a longer national lockdown.
“It is absolutely imperative that the Government does not repeat its
dithering when it comes to the additional economic support that will now
clearly be needed. Ministers have a once-in-a-generation responsibility
to provide whatever public funding is needed to prop up our economy and
support businesses and jobs through this period of much tighter
restrictions. The Chancellor needs to stand up urgently and say that he
will do whatever it takes for as long as is needed.
“The Prime Minister has done the right thing by extending the furlough
scheme which was due to end tomorrow – but he must immediately confirm
that it will be at 80 per cent of wages for everyone who needs it.
Government support must also include direct grants and loans for
businesses in the sectors likely to be worst affected to be made
“I would like to make a direct appeal to all Londoners as your Mayor:
Thank you for the enormous sacrifices you have made over the last seven
months. You may not agree with or like the Government’s latest
restrictions. However, we must all follow them. Please continue
following the restrictions and public health guidance. We must act to
protect each other.
“I know it won’t be easy, but history tells us that Londoners always
pull together in times of crisis. We must once again make huge
collective sacrifices now in order to prevent even greater suffering
later. I will continue to lobby the government to finally sort out a
fully functioning test and trace system and the financial support London
needs. I promise you that our city will get through this together.”
Cllr Georgia Gould, Chair of London Councils says:
‘This is a difficult and worrying time for all Londoners – our
communities, residents and businesses. Unfortunately we have seen rising
cases and most seriously hospital admissions in many parts of the UK
including London. In light of this the new restrictions announced today
by the Government are essential to keep all Londoners safe.
‘The London boroughs stand together with Londoners in the fight against
Covid19. We will be working flat out over the coming weeks to ensure
that those who need help in our community have as much support as
possible during this difficult time.
“We will continue to work with the Mayor and the Government to attempt
to balance the public health, economic and social impacts of this virus
and we will continue to make the case for a comprehensive support
package for residents, businesses and councils to enable people to stay
safe and support our local economies.
‘I know Londoners have already faced so much hardship and sacrifice and
how hard it is to face more. But I have also seen the extraordinary way
communities have come together to take care of each other over the last
few months and I hope we can continue to look after each other over a