CHRIS GREEN - Our small actions will save lives
Every time we turn on the news, the problems surrounding Coronavirus get grimmer and grimmer.
We know it started in a wet meat market in China and has had a devastating effect on the city of Wuhan with their local hospitals being overwhelmed.
The emergency got so bad there that the Chinese government decided to build new hospitals just to deal with the victims of Coronavirus.
Airlines have now transmitted this virus across the world, and it is now having a terrible impact, particularly in Italy.
The country is now on a complete lockdown due to the severity of this disease and its ability to spread at an alarming rate.
In the United Kingdom, our government has also been dealing with the threat of Coronavirus which is why we have now taken actions to reduce risk for the most vulnerable.
Advice has now been given to encourage people to work from home if they can. Exceptions have been granted for a broad range of key workers, such as nurses and delivery drivers, who we depend upon to keep essential services running during the outbreak.
For those that cannot continue to work, the government has introduced financial support in the form of grants and loans covering up to 80 per cent of people’s salaries. The self employed will also be supported with a taxable grant to cover lost business during the outbreak.
A three month mortgage holiday and additional protection for renters will also be available for those that need extra support.
We have witnessed significant action in recent days to mitigate the very serious threat of Coronavirus.
Activities with Parliament have now been significantly reduced due to the threat of this virus.
Parliament has passed an emergency bill to deal with this pandemic which did not have a vote because of the high level of cross-party consensus, this shows high level of concern Parliamentarians have.
As hundreds of thousand of people volunteer to support the NHS we must remember that everyday acts can really make a difference to the national effort.
Washing hands and keeping six foot gaps between us when we are out and about does help and these small actions will reduce the pressure on the NHS and save lives as a result.
You may have heard the news that the Prime Minister and Health Secretary have both caught the Coronavirus and have gone into self-isolation.
The Chief Medical Officer is also showing the symptoms of the disease and is in quarantine.
Some of the reaction from the broadcast media has been perverse.
There has been shock and outrage that the PM ‘has not been following his own advice’ which can be rather difficult if you are trying to run the country.
Most people do understand that the PM is trying to navigate a difficult course with the support from his expert advisors and that dealing with a global pandemic is not a routine event.
We can only imagine what these same journalists would be saying if the Prime Minister was given special privileges and had hidden himself away for the duration of the Covid-19 outbreak.
All too often, elements of the broadcast media choose to play games with serious matters of life and death and have no greater contribution than to give meaning to ‘damned if you do and damned if you don’t’.
On a lighter note, the Liberal Democrat leadership race has been postponed for a year so we can enjoy that for a little longer.
As the Labour leadership race plods on, have some sympathy for the self-isolating candidates as they cannot now celebrate the result in a huge socialist rally.
Instead, they must film a victory speech before the result is announced so that it can immediately be broadcast to the faithful.
If the Oscars can get their announcements mixed up, I am sure Labour will be broadcasting the wrong victory speech on the night!