Roadmap to come out of lockdown

Today the Prime Minister will set out our roadmap for a cautious easing of national restrictions, which will ensure we do not undo the incredible progress we have made so far.

  • In a statement to the House, the Prime Minister will introduce a plan for leaving lockdown that will balance social and economic impacts, while preserving the health and safety of our country. 
  • Our roadmap will set four stages for easing restrictions, and before we progress through each step of our plan, we will examine the latest data to ensure the following four key tests are met: 

    • The vaccine deployment programme continues successfully. 
    • Evidence which shows vaccines are effective in reducing hospitalisations and deaths of those vaccinated. 
    • Infection rates do not risk a surge in hospitalisations which could put unsustainable pressures on our NHS. 
    • Our assessment of the risks of easing restrictions are not fundamentally changed by new variants. 
  • With the four tests currently met, we will now proceed with the first step, getting all children back into schools from 8 March, as well as prioritising ways for people to safely reunite with their loved ones and the return of outdoor organised sports towards the end of next month. 
  • Together we will cautiously move out of lockdown, so we do not risk the sacrifices each and every one of us has made to keep each other safe as we slowly return to our normal way of life.

Above this point the words in this post are a direct cut and paste of the official line. What follows from this sentence onwards is my own comment and only I am responsible for it.

We need to come out of lockdown, but we need to do it in a way which balances the needs of the economy and everyone's desperate wish to have their lives back with the need to keep people safe.

One of the worst things which could happen would be to unlock too quickly, have the virus take off again, and have to go into an unplanned fourth lockdown.

The government is never going to please everyone. As one of my friends wrote a few months ago, whoever had been in power and whatever they had done, it would be seen as not restrictive enough by the relatives of some of those who died and too restrictive by some of those who lost their jobs or businesses. And how can you possibly blame either of those groups for feeling like that? 

Let's see what Boris tells the House at 3.30 and the country in his 7pm broadcast. But I believe he is right to try to strike a balance.


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