Labour wants timetable

Starmer urges Raab to publish lockdown exit strategy


Closed: Grassmarket, Edinburgh (pic: Terry Murden)

Labour leader Sir Keir Starmer has urged the Government to publish its exit strategy this week, as he warns that the “silent pressures on families and communities across the country cannot be underestimated”.

In a letter to the Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab, Sir Keir says Labour will support the Government’s decision to extend the lockdown – which is expected to be confirmed on Thursday – but wants a clear plan and a strategy to ease restrictions when possible.

Sir Keir writes: “The question for Thursday therefore is no longer about whether the lockdown should be extended, but about what the Government’s position is on how and when it can be eased in due course and on what criteria that decision will be taken.”

He adds: “We agree the measures need to remain in place, but to maintain morale and hope, people need a sense of what comes next. The silent pressures on communities across the country cannot be underestimated.”

His comments came as some European countries including, Italy, Spain and Austria have allowed more people to return to work in order to revive their economies, though under severe restrictions.

Sir Keir has urged the Foreign Secretary to outline the sectors of the economy and the core public services, such as schools, that will most likely see restrictions eased, with an accompanying plan to support people’s lives and livelihoods.

The government replied that it will be guided by scientific advice and said that an early end to the lockdown risked confusing the public over the core message.

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