Matt Hancock blames public for latest rise in coronavirus infections

Matt Hancock discusses coronavirus on BBC Breakfast. Photograph: BBC.

Matt Hancock discusses coronavirus on BBC Breakfast. Photograph: BBC. - Credit: Archant

The health secretary Matt Hancock has blamed the public for the latest rise in coronavirus infections, saying that they were not keeping to social distancing rules.

Matt Hancock said test and trace data has shown 'most of the transmission is happening between households' and between people visiting family and friends.

His comments came after it was announced that people from different households in Greater Manchester, and parts of east Lancashire and West Yorkshire would be banned from meeting each other inside their homes or in gardens following a spike in cases.


Have your say

Send your letters for publication to The New European by emailing letters@theneweuropean.co.uk and pick up an edition each Thursday for more comment and analysis. Find your nearest stockist here or subscribe to a print or digital edition for just £13. You can also join our readers' Facebook group to keep the discussion and debate going with thousands of fellow pro-Europeans.



You may also want to watch:


Hancock told BBC Breakfast: 'Whenever anybody tests positive, the vast majority of them we manage to speak to, and we ask which contacts they've had, and that's shown that the vast majority of contact of people who have the virus, other than people in their own household… is from households visiting and then visiting friends and relatives.

Most Read

'One of the terrible things about this virus is it thrives on the sort of social contact that makes life worth living and that is a serious problem with the virus.'

On Thursday night, Hancock wrote on Twitter: 'The spread is largely due to households meeting and not abiding to social distancing.'

He said two households can still meet 'at a social distance in a public place outdoors', such as a park where there is lots of space, but meeting another household in pub gardens or outdoor restaurant space is not allowed in the newly restricted area.

Asked about the prospect of crowds gathering together too closely on the expected hottest day of the year on Friday, the health secretary told the BBC: 'It's so important that people follow social distancing rules. My message is people need to keep doing that.

'We've shown we're prepared to take action if that's necessary.

'Having just announced this action last night I don't this morning want to talk about what more we might do, but we have shown we're prepared to take action.'

Become a Supporter

The New European is proud of its journalism and we hope you are proud of it too. We believe our voice is important - both in representing the pro-EU perspective and also to help rebalance the right wing extremes of much of the UK national press. If you value what we are doing, you can help us by making a contribution to the cost of our journalism.

Become a supporter
Comments powered by Disqus