By Daniel Gaffney
In an address to the British people, Prime Minister Boris Johnson has declared that Britain must enter a state of lockdown.
The Prime Minister offered the people of Britain a very strict instruction: “you must stay at home.”
Johnson said that people are only permitted to leave their home in order to:
- Shop for necessities
- Exercise on your own
- Make a journey as a medical necessity
- Commute to work (this only applies to key workers)
These measures were announced in a bid to stop the NHS from reaching full capacity. Police will enforce the measures through special powers to issue fines and by issuing dispersal notices.
The measures will remain in place for the next three weeks. They are the most stringent set of measures set upon the British public since the Second World War.
The UK had been under growing pressure to follow other countries by ordering the closure of more shops, and enforcing rules on social distancing.
The UK’s death toll has reached 335. A further 46 people have died in England since Sunday – aged between 47 and 105 and all with underlying health conditions – while there were four deaths in Scotland and four in Wales.
There have been 83,945 tests to date, with 6,650 confirmed cases; up 967 from Sunday’s total.
The NHS in England has announced it has identified 1.5 million of the most at-risk people, while there are 200,000 in Scotland, 70,000 in Wales and 40,000 in Northern Ireland.
This turning point has been foreseeable since last Monday, when Italy began full suppression of public movement.
There has been increasing pressure from within the UK for more stringent measures, after large crowds began to gather in national parks and on beaches over the weekend.
It has been announced that public parks will remain open, but police will be patrolling them to prevent unnecessary crowds from gathering.
Suspicions that the PM was going to announce more extensive measures started to rise when Downing Street said that the Prime Minister’s address was to take place at 20:30, rather than the usual time of 17:00 that Britain has become accustomed to.
The Prime Minister ended his address by stating that the measures will be constantly reviewed, possibly every three weeks.
The government hopes that the latest measures are so clear, that people will simply do as they are told, and the number of cases of civil-19 will plateau.