"London may be at the peak at the moment but without doubt it is going to spread elsewhere" claims Tory MP

Thursday, March 19th, 2020 12:08pm

Conservative MP for Harlow Robert Halfon, chair of the Education Select Committee, spoke to Love Sport Radio about the decision to close down schools from Friday and what the public should be doing to combat COVID-19.

Boris Johnson is issuing a daily briefing about what his government is doing in the fight against COVID-19 and to offer new updates about the virus. 

Yesterday the Prime Minister announced schools in England, Wales and Scotland were to close at the end of this week whilst in Northern Ireland they will be shut from Monday. Mr. Johnson also stated examinations set to take place in May and June were also being halted. 

However not every school will be closed- some schools will remain open, with a reduced number of staff, to provide support for the children of key workers. The definition of key workers is to be explained later today. Schools have also been asked to assist those students in need such as children with special education needs or those who receive free school meals. 

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Kelvin MacKenzie believes the impending school closures across the UK will see a lot more of the younger generation "wander around London" for the foreseeable future which might be an issue. Speaking to Kelvin on Love Sport Radio earlier today Robert Halfon MP understood those concerns: "I think this is why the Government were trying to keep the schools open as long as possible, not just to protect key workers- not just public sector but also delivery workers, factory workers, critical infrastructure employees.

"But we also were worried about what would happen to the children if they congregate, or older children because they are more likely to spread the virus than younger ones. 

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"But where the decision the Government took, there are going to be problems but I think we just came to the decision, the Government came to a decision that they just had to do it because a lot of schools were closing anyway because staff were self-isolating or had fallen ill and it was becoming unsustainable."

Quizzed over why London was the center of the UK's COVID-19 outbreak, the MP for Harlow stated: "I'm only an armchair observer, i'm guessing that it's a huge population, people live in often in cramped accommodations, there is less spaces to [get] fresh air. It's hard to know the reason why.

"London obviously has had a lot of people travel into it from overseas as well in terms of holidays and tourists and goodness knows what and I think that's why." 

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Mr. Halfon went on to say: "London may be at the peak at the moment but without doubt it is going to spread elsewhere. 

"It's just a calamitous time for our country but if we're strong, we just have to get through it as much as possible. The only thing we can do is follow the scientific and medical evidence, I don't see there is any other option, whether it is right or wrong, that's what we have to do because they seem to be the people who know best and what is going on."

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