New research has shown that the Covid-19 hotspot in Gloucestershire was probably related to the decision to go ahead with the Cheltenham Festival. Prof Spector from King’s College London told the BBC that “people will have probably died prematurely” as a result of that decision.
The lesson from this episode is highly relevant now, with a growing chorus of voices arguing that we should further relax movement restrictions while there is still a high prevalence of the disease. The Green Party believes this is premature and that we should exercise more caution.
We continue to argue for the introduction of a locally-based test, trace and isolate regime, using the skills of Gloucestershire public health experts. We also oppose the centralisation of data to Public Health England, removing vital information from community GPs and local authorities.
Until those responsible for our health here in Gloucestershire have clear information about the spread of the disease and can operate an effective contact-tracing regime we consider that movement restrictions should not be relaxed any further and that schools should remain open only to essential workers.
Molly Scott Cato
Stroud District Green Party