As the Government’s unprecedented package of support for businesses and workers continues to evolve, I am pleased that the Chancellor has taken action to bolster the Business Interruption Loan Scheme. This follows concerns about the accessibility of the scheme which I raised with Ministers on behalf of some businesses in the Forest of Dean.
I know that this continues to be an exceptionally difficult time for our families, friends and those in the local community that are most vulnerable to the virus.
The Government continues to follow the scientific advice closely, introducing and reviewing measures as and when it will be most effective.
The review of the current movement restrictions will take place next week, but since this is due to coincide with the period of highest hospital admissions and, sadly, deaths we should prepare to have to observe strict guidelines about staying at home for a further period of time.
The next couple of weeks will be the most difficult yet, as hospital admissions and deaths rise, however our local NHS is working round the clock to make sure that Gloucestershire is prepared for when the worst comes.
Myself and my fellow MPs across Gloucestershire are on regular conference calls with Gloucestershire’s NHS & County leaders and are impressed with the measures they have taken to make sure the county is prepared and their efforts to ensure that NHS and other healthcare workers such as those performing important work in the social care sector have the equipment they need to keep themselves safe.
On behalf of all six Gloucestershire MPs, it has been my job to make sure that the Health Secretary Matt Hancock understands what our local health & social care workers need to keep safe and to raise supply concerns from our local NHS directly with him.
I also spoke to Gloucestershire’s Chief Constable and the Constabulary’s senior leadership team last week, with my colleagues, to make sure that they had all the support they needed from the Government. So far, they are doing a good job in policing the new guidance and enforcing the law ensuring they do so with the consent of the public in line with our policing traditions.
I am grateful to all those who are working tirelessly to provide essential public services at this time. Please help them by following government guidance and staying at home. We will save more lives if we all play our part.