The new restrictions allow people to leave home only to:
- Go to work if you absolutely cannot work from home
- Exercise once a day in your local area
- Seek medical care or avoid injury, illness or risk of harm (including domestic abuse)
- Care for vulnerable people or to provide or seek childcare
- And for a small number of other exemptions listed at https://www.gov.uk/coronavirus
Primary and secondary schools have switched to remote learning apart from for vulnerable children and the children of key workers and this is in place until at least February half-term. Primary schools in Lambeth did not reopen this week due to the council’s intervention against the government’s decision to open schools in some parts of London, and while it is vital that children are in school as much as possible, that can only happen where it is safe to do so for pupils, their families, teachers and staff.
I have consistently called on the government to act sooner with tougher restrictions to get the virus under control and while earlier and more decisive action from them might have prevented the spread of the virus to the dangerous levels they are at now, it is imperative that we all stick to them now they are introduced. While this crisis has been immensely difficult for so many of us, we need to summon the same spirit and solidarity that got us through the first lockdown, when so many people stayed at home and helped to save thousands of lives. With vaccines being rolled out to vulnerable people across Lambeth and UK as we speak, there is light at the end of the tunnel and we must work together to get through this.
Please continue to follow the public health advice: wear a mask, stay at least 2 metres distance from anyone not in your household and wash your hands regularly. If you have symptoms, please follow the NHS advice and get a test. The council has also now rolled out testing for those without symptoms in sites across Lambeth – you can find out more here.
You can also access support for yourself or a vulnerable person, whether on mental health, finances, employment or support for young people on our website.
Time and again throughout this crisis, the people of Lambeth have acted to protect each other and our friends, family and neighbours. We now all need to act to do so again. Stay safe, stay at home and help us all to get through the coming months.
Cllr Jack Hopkins
Lambeth Council Leader