People Who Ignore Government Advice Selfish

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People Who Ignore Government Advice Selfish

People who have ignored government advice aimed at tackling the coronavirus pandemic are “very selfish”, says the health secretary.

Matt Hancock said the government was willing to take “more action” if needed to stop the virus from spreading.

Over the weekend, photos emerged showing crowds of people visiting open spaces across many parts of the UK.

Emergency legislation that would grant powers aimed at tackling the pandemic will be debated by MPs later.

The UK’s death toll has reached 281, according to the latest figures – including a person aged 18 with an underlying health condition.

Meanwhile, the NHS in England has announced it has identified – and is contacting – 1.5 million of the most at-risk people who should now stay at home for 12 weeks.

It comes as parents are urged to keep their children at home unless “absolutely necessary”, with schools across the UK now closed to most pupils.

There are now 5,683 confirmed cases of coronavirus in the UK.

Speaking on BBC Radio 4, Mr Hancock said he didn’t know why some people were ignoring the government’s advice.

“It’s very selfish,” he told the Today programme. “The NHS is doing everything it can and preparing for the spread of this virus.

“If people go within two metres of others who they don’t live with then they’re helping to spread the virus – and the consequences of that costs lives and it means that, for everyone, this will go on for longer.”

The health secretary said the government advice on social distancing was “really clear” and people should stay two metres apart, staying at home if at all possible.

Asked whether the cabinet would be considering a firmer lockdown when it meets today, he added: “Nothing is off the table. Of course we are looking at what other European countries are doing.”

The BBC’s political editor Laura Kuenssberg said the government is now considering closing all non-essential retail stores and introducing fines on people who ignore the current coronavirus advice.

Labour has called on the government to increase lockdown measures to “keep people safe”.

Shadow health secretary Jonathan Ashworth said: “Other countries across the world have taken further far-reaching social distancing measures.

“We now call on the government to move to enforced social distancing and greater social protection as a matter of urgency.”

https://www.bbc.com

Paul Whiteman, head of school leaders’ union the NAHT, said schools are struggling with staff numbers due to the coronavirus outbreak.

“My appeal to the families of key workers is: this is not business as usual. Keep your family at home if at all possible,” he said.

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It comes as the government says it is setting up “hubs” around the country to arrange deliveries of groceries and medicines to the people in the most at-risk group.

These include people with specific cancers, severe respiratory conditions and people who have received organ transplants.

Councils, pharmacists and members of the Armed Forces will help this work and there will be opportunities for members of the public to volunteer.

People Who Ignore Government Advice Selfish

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