Responding to the Prime Minister’s “roadmap” out of Coronavirus restrictions, Stockton North MP Alex Cunningham said:
“Thanks to everyone’s efforts to follow the rules, and the hard work of our fantastic NHS workers, we are seeing the light at the end of the tunnel. Infection rates are coming down but are still relatively high with more than 200 for every 100,000 people in the Tees Valley so we need to be cautious going forward.
The vaccine roll-out has been a real success story and I applaud the work of those who have made it so. The Government must make sure the Prime Minister’s roadmap is carried out in a way that complements the vaccine roll-out.
“The Government also needs to provide a proper package of support to businesses and communities as it slowly re-opens our society. This means extended furlough and business rate relief for at least six months, no cuts to Universal Credit, help for those who have been so far excluded from help and a comprehensive testing system in our schools.
“Our country, economy and people have suffered. It didn’t have to be this way. If the Prime Minister had followed expert advice in March 2020, and then in the Autumn, we might have avoided a third lockdown and many deaths. We all want this to be the last lockdown and I welcome the Prime Minister’s cautious approach to lifting restrictions.
“I hope the Prime Minister continues to put expert advice over that of his backbench MPs and proceeds slowly to avoid a repetition of his past mistakes.”