New national lockdown announced: stay at home
The Prime Minister has announced an immediate national lockdown to control the spread of coronavirus as rates rapidly increase across London and the country.
You must now stay at home, and only leave your home for specific reasons, such as:
- Shopping for essential items and medicine
- To travel to work, but only if you cannot work from home
- To seek medical help, get tested or get vaccinated
- To escape domestic abuse
Full details of what you can and cannot do are available on the Government’s website. Further information on the impact on Council services will be available in due course.
Colleges, primary and secondary schools will remain open only for vulnerable children and the children of critical workers. All other children will learn remotely until February half term. Early Years settings currently remain open.
If you are clinically extremely vulnerable, you should only go out for medical appointments, exercise or if it is essential. You should not attend work.
In Hackney, coronavirus rates are now very high, at 866 cases per 100,000 people. Rates are high across all wards in Hackney.
For those over 65, and most vulnerable to the virus, incidence rates have increased by 422% since the start of December.
After nine long months of making daily sacrifices to help slow the spread of coronavirus, I know how hard the Prime Minister’s announcement of further restrictions tonight is for families and businesses in Hackney.
In these gloomy winter nights, the thought of still not being able to see our family, friends and loved ones is tough – particularly for those shielding, living alone, in temporary accommodation or in shared houses. The simple facts show that these new measures are, however, sadly grimly necessary.
Coronavirus cases in Hackney are very high and rose incredibly fast over December across all age groups and parts of the borough. Over the last few weeks, I have heard first-hand harrowing stories from our NHS heroes at Homerton Hospital about the immense pressure they are under. We have also seen a sad increase in the number of people losing their lives to this terrible disease, including elders from Hackney’s Muslim communities over the weekend.
Our borough faces the gravest situation yet in our fight against coronavirus, and we must all play our part to keep Hackney safe. The time to take action is now and if we don’t act, every sacrifice made and life lost risks having been in vain.
If you do not follow these new rules, you will contribute to more patients not getting the lifesaving treatment they need from overstretched doctors and nurses, more young people facing the debilitating effects of long covid and more families grieving for a loved one taken too soon. It will also delay being safely able to see children return to school, our economy reopening, restore independence to older or more vulnerable residents, and the chance to see our loved ones again.
Together, we will get through this. The Council and the NHS is here to support you – whether you need help with accessing money, food or essential supplies, are worried about your mental health or need support with home-schooling.
The Hackney spirit shown by our communities last year made me prouder than ever to live in and represent this part of London. I know that again, we will rise to the challenge, get through these final dark months, and create the time and space to deliver the new vaccines and on that promise of more hopeful 2021 we all so badly want to see.
The rate of coronavirus per 100,000 people in all age groups across Hackney has increased significantly over the past week compared with the rates at the beginning of December:
- Under 16s: 386 per 100,000 people (up 75%)
- 16-29: 1,023 per 100,000 people (up 309%)
- 30-44: 912 per 100,000 people (up 443%)
- 45-64: 1,065 per 100,000 people (up 365%)
- 65+: 673 per 100,000 people (up 422%)
The roll out of the vaccine continues in Hackney, with those over 80 as well as health and social care workers receiving the inoculation at local vaccination centres. Residents are being reminded not to contact their GP about vaccinations, as people who are eligible will be contacted by the NHS directly.
If you have coronavirus symptoms, even mild ones, you must isolate yourself immediately from other people for 10 days and get a test. If you are asked to self-isolate, regardless of symptoms, you must do so to avoid spreading the virus further. You can book a test online, by downloading the NHS COVID-19 app, or calling 119.
Coronavirus symptoms are:
- A high temperature
- A new, continuous cough
- A loss or change to your sense of smell or taste