Posted: 21 October, 2020 at 11:48 am
I know this news will come as a blow to many people in our area who have already sacrificed so much in fighting this virus.
But cases are rising rapidly – including among older people – and we’re seeing intensive care beds filling up and more people dying. So we have to do more to help stop the spread.
In the discussions I had directly with the health secretary I wanted to make sure that the extra restrictions for South Yorkshire are targeted where there is evidence of outbreaks. This is why our gyms and bingo halls are staying open when they have closed in other areas with the highest alert level; and I’ve also argued hard for hairdressers and nail bars to continue working safely.
MPs have strongly backed local leaders in pushing for support for businesses and extra cash for testing, and the Armed Forces are on stand-by to help if we need them.
But the government could go further. Nationally, Labour is continuing to argue that as we move towards a second lockdown the government has got to step up and support jobs, family incomes and businesses, as they did in March.
In the last seven days:
The new restrictions mean:
In addition, the following restrictions will also apply in South Yorkshire:
South Yorkshire will receive £41m from the government, including £30m for businesses and £11 to support public health measures like test and trace.
If restrictions work, individual local authorities will be able to move to lower alert levels as soon as it’s safe. But to get to that point as quickly as possible we all need to follow the new rules, which come in on Saturday 24 October.