Covid-19 Update - Statement

Part of the debate – in the House of Lords at 1:45 pm on 18th May 2021.

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Photo of Lord Bethell Lord Bethell The Parliamentary Under-Secretary for Health and Social Care 1:45 pm, 18th May 2021

My Lords, I am a big supporter of the “fast and hard” principle. In our response in Bolton, Bedford, London and elsewhere, we have demonstrated that principle in our handling of the Indian variant. I point out that the use of testing and social distancing measures in schools has been enormously effective. One of the remarkable aspects of the infection rate so far is that transmission levels among school-aged children have not increased in the way that SAGE and others, including myself, once feared. We should take a “glass half-full” moment to applaud that fact. I reassure the noble Lord that we will absolutely make these decisions on the data. Space has been put in between the steps for exactly that reason, and we are not going to rush it.