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Part of Prime Minister – in the House of Commons at 11:34 am on 22nd April 2020.

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Photo of Keir Starmer Keir Starmer Leader of Her Majesty's Official Opposition, Leader of the Labour Party 11:34 am, 22nd April 2020

I thank the First Secretary of State for giving us the figure in relation to NHS workers and, of course, each and every one of them is a tragic case. I am disappointed that we do not have a number for social care workers, and I put him on notice that I will ask the same question again next week and, hopefully, we will have a better answer.

Let me turn to protective equipment. Clearly, this is crucial to those at risk on the frontline who are risking their lives to save ours. The least they deserve is the right protective equipment. We have all heard countless examples of frontline workers not getting the equipment that they need. This is from a Unison care worker just last weekend:

“I work in a nursing home. I’m terrified. I don’t know if residents have the virus. We are wearing home-made masks. This is horrible and I am very scared.”

That word “scared” is one that we have all heard many times in the past two or three weeks. A survey by the Royal College of Nursing found that half of nursing staff felt under pressure to work without the levels of protective equipment set out in official guidance. This has been a stress test of our resilience, and the Government plan is clearly not working. I ask the First Secretary of State to tell frontline workers at risk when they will finally get the equipment they need to keep them safe.