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Incompetent government in North Tyneside coronavirus row

Incompetent government in North Tyneside covid row
Photo from creative commons

Just when you think that the current government cannot be any more incompetent, they excel themselves yet again. North Tyneside goes into a different set of rules and the ‘powers that be’ do not bother to inform let alone consult.

Lockdown by stealth

We heard today that the government has identified eight areas which are now subject to new advice. This is due to the number of cases of the Indian variant locally. These areas include North Tyneside in which there have been 40 reported cases. The government has stated that people should not travel into or out of these areas. Additionally they have advised people not to meet indoors. At this point in time the government has denied a “lockdown by stealth”.

It may be that this is a necessary measure. What is not necessary or desirable is that this announcement seems to have been made without any prior communication with local councils or MPs. This appears to be the case in North Tyneside, in which local councillors found out three days after the government’s edict. This shows up an incompetent government.

Incompetent government urged to remove latest guidance

Jonathan Ashworth, shadow Health Minister has called on the government to withdraw the latest guidance now. He says that a meeting is needed so as to come up with a plan. He described the actions of the government as “insulting” and as  “local lockdowns by stealth, by the backdoor”. Then he added that the health secretary “doesn’t bother to tell us”.

Ashworth also asked what this meant for families who had already made plans to travel or who had booked trips.

Incompetent government has not thought about local businesses

The new guidelines are not law: they are advice only. This has prompted a strong reaction from local businesses who are naturally concerned.

James Ramsbottom, chief executive of North East Chamber of Commerce said:

“Businesses and people in North Tyneside need urgent clarity on rules and guidance for their area. It is completely unacceptable to have such poor communications about something so important for people’s health and livelihoods. Government needs to set out what the rules are at present and provide support for businesses if official guidance significantly reduces their demand.”

Update

It now seems that the incompetent government has had to backtrack on their initial guidance. The official advice now says “minimise” rather than “avoid” travel. This certainly makes more sense when, in the case of North Tyneside, it is but a short metro journey travelling to Newcastle, where many people need to go to to get to work.

This is a breaking news story and will be updated as we hear more.

If you live in North Tyneside and would like to have your say please contact editor@northeastbylines.co.uk

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