HARLOW Council leader has issued a statement on Essex being moved into second tier of Covid restrictions.
Cllr Ingall said: “A week ago, Dr Mike Gogarty, the Public Health Chief for Essex County Council, asked for support from all District Council leaders to petition the government to move into the 2nd tier of Covid restrictions sooner rather than later.
“It was clear from the evidence presented that infections across Essex had begun to rise exponentially and that, unless immediate action was taken, Essex would be in the same perilous state that faces areas in the north of England. It was also made clear that early action would result in fewer residents becoming ill and fewer deaths from this awful virus. It was because of this that I, along with the vast majority of other Council leaders across Essex, offered support for Dr Mike Gogarty’s proposal.
“Later that day MPs from across the County also offered their support and it is on the basis of this that the approach was made to the Secretary of State resulting in today’s news.
“Nobody wants to see freedoms curtailed. Nobody takes any pleasure in imposing these restrictions, but I believe they are necessary and that taking a “sooner rather than later” approach will save lives and lead to Harlow getting out of the restrictions sooner too. We do not want to be in the situation so many northern areas have found themselves in, where the restrictions were imposed too late to be effective and as a result people have had to live under higher levels of restrictions for far too long.
“We must now all play our part in fighting the virus by observing the new restrictions, washing hands, using face masks, keeping our distance, working from home where possible, not meeting up with anyone indoors unless they are part of a support bubble, keeping to the rule of six outside and all the other guidance that accompanies tier 2.
“Harlow residents have sacrificed much already and I am sure they stand ready to play their part again, but this sacrifice must be accompanied by the government offering the support people and businesses need and finally getting the track and trace system up and running properly.”
We keep hearing about the support business will get, but under Tier 2, hospitality venues get nothing. Many hospitality businesses have reworked there operations at significant cost to offer a COVID secure facilties, It was may even harder when we had to close at 10pm but again we adapted, we were already working on ssignificantly reduced revenue, this decisiion today brings closure and more Staff out of work a significant step closer.
I ask the Council to clearly demonstrate to its Constituents what evidence was used by the Council to agree to support Essex Council’s decision to place Harlow in the Tier 2 High category when it is belowe the national average.
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