Home Business News Relaxing rules for Christmas is ‘reckless’ says expert

Relaxing rules for Christmas is ‘reckless’ says expert

by LLB Reporter
16th Dec 20 2:56 pm

Prime Minister Boris Johnson has said on Wednesday that he will allow three households to mix for  only five days over Christmas.

However, Professor Andrew Haward, director at UCL Institute of Epidemiology & Health Care, has said that this is “reckless” and politicians have a duty of care.

Johnson told MPs in the Commons on Wednesday, “We don’t want to criminalise people’s long-made plans.

“But we do think it’s absolutely vital that people should – at this very, very tricky time – exercise a high degree of personal responsibility, especially when they come into contact with elderly people, and avoid contact with elderly people wherever possible.”

He added, “We should exercise extreme caution in the way we celebrate Christmas. We can celebrate it sensibly but we have to be extremely cautious in the way we behave.”

Politicians “have a duty to be giving very clear messages and that is exactly the opposite of what we have got at the moment,” an academic has said.

But Professor Hayward told Sky News: “It seems to me that the raising of restrictions at this time in the pandemic when we are seeing exponential increases in cases combined with the emergence of a new strain, such that households can potentially mix three households for five days, is reckless to me.

“And the difference between the messaging of what you can do and what you should do is really quite hard to communicate.

“I think many people will take the message that if the government says it is okay to do this then it is safe to do this, whereas in many circumstances it clearly isn’t safe.”

He warned that relaxing the rules for Christmas will increase the infection rate, with “the number of deaths” soaring adding an extra strain on the NHS who are already struggling with annual winter pressures.

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