By Ben Kerrigan-
Leicester could be heading for a local lockdown after Leicester MP called on the government to introduce the UK’s first local lockdown amid a “perfect storm” of new coronavirus cases.
Leicester East MP Claudia Webbe called for action after 658 new cases in the Leicester area since mid-June.
The MP attributed the new wave of the virus to high poverty, more positive coronavirus tests, and higher ethnic diversity in Leicester East had contributed to a “perfect storm” which was putting her constituents at risk.
The call for the lockdown could mark the beginning of other lockdowns in the Uk if other cities reveal new flares of increased coronavirus, ruining the joy of lockdown easing announced by Boris Johnson.
Health experts and scientists last week warned about easing the lockdown too quickly, warning that it could lead to new cases of Covid-19.
In the last month, Brits have flocked to beaches in extreme number, sparking alarms of danger.
Wide protests by The Black Lives matters have also not helped plans to contain the deadly virus.
The Govt is drip feeding the truth,” Webbe tweeted. “A local Lockdown is on the cards for Leicester; a city where the minority make up the majority; thus a city where its residents are disproportionately at risk from #COVID19.
“Govt’s rush to ease lockdown is reckless.”
Health Secretary Matt Hancock has been looking at the legal position required to introduce a local lockdown. A High Court challenge was launched last month by entrepreneur, Simon Dolan to challenge the legality of the lockdown. The court has not yet ruled on the challenge.
Four mobile testing units have been sent to the city in the past week and health officials are said to be closely monitoring clusters of new cases linked to food processing plants.
Leicester’s mayor Sir Peter Soulsby said the city has been given latest government data showing where outbreaks might be happening. government spokesperson said they were supporting officials in Leicester in their battle against the disease.
The Department of Health and Social Care on Sunday stopped short of saying a local lockdown was likely for Leicester, but acknowledged the city was an area of concern as it urged residents in the city to be vigilant against the virus.
“We are supporting the council and local partners in Leicester to help prevent further transmission of the virus,” the spokesman said in a statement.
“We have deployed four mobile testing sites and made thousands of hNHS Test and Trace will contact anyone testing positive to help them identify their recent contacts and advise who may have been near to someone with the virus to stay at home to prevent the spread.
“We urge the people of Leicester to continue to practice social distancing, wash their hands regularly, get tested immediately if they have symptoms and follow the advice they receive if contacted by NHS Test and Trace. This advice is there to protect communities and save lives.”