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Coronavirus dominating Westminster

PUBLISHED: 14:36 18 March 2020 | UPDATED: 14:36 18 March 2020

Ilforda South MP Sam Tarry has been talking coronavirus in Westminster.

Ilforda South MP Sam Tarry has been talking coronavirus in Westminster.

Archant

This has been an extraordinary couple of weeks in Westminster.

While the budget and the chancellor’s appearance at the despatch box would usually have been the highlight, this last week has instead been dominated by coronavirus, which has spread at an alarming rate throughout the UK, and finally seen the government forced to take action.

Sadly it claimed its first victims in Redbridge in recent days, following the deaths of two people in BHR Hospitals. Understandably, constituents and our NHS staff are increasingly concerned about what steps to take.

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That’s why I’ve questioned the health secretary directly in parliament this week, as well as writing to the chancellor to demand that emergency measures are put in place to protect workers and the most vulnerable in society.

What the government is telling us is changing daily, but we now appear to finally be moving in line with the advice of the World Health Organization, with social distancing measures in place, directions to work from home where possible, and restrictions on all mass gatherings as well as visits to pubs, clubs, restaurants, theatres and cinemas.

In addition, the over-70s must now remain at home for the next 12 weeks, even if they are in good health.

Going forward, I urge everyone to continue to follow the latest advice on gov.uk and call 111 should you display any symptoms.

For now, parliament continues to remain open and I will be doing all I can to provide support and guidance to constituents.


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