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‘Flagrant disregard’: bereaved hit out at PM over No 10 backyard get together | Boris Johnson


Bereaved households and mates of people that died from Covid have criticised Boris Johnson over a photograph that has emerged exhibiting the prime minister at a gathering with wine and cheese within the Downing Road backyard along with his spouse and as much as 17 employees in an obvious breach of lockdown guidelines.

The picture was shared with the Guardian after No 10’s denial final week that there was a social occasion on Friday 15 Might 2020 that included wine, spirits and pizza, inside and outdoors the constructing. Johnson’s spokesperson mentioned Downing Road employees had been working within the backyard within the afternoon and night.

Q&A

What had been the Covid guidelines in England on 15 Might 2020?

Present

The Downing Road gathering on 15 Might 2020 befell beneath the foundations of England’s first coronavirus lockdown. Two days earlier, an modification to Covid laws had come into pressure permitting the primary between-household contact since lockdown started. Nonetheless, this was restricted to 2 folks, who might solely meet outdoor and at a distance of a minimum of 2 metres. 

The foundations had been much less particular about social gatherings at work. Only a few workplaces had been open, and when this was the case, employees had been urged to maintain as distanced as potential. No 10 employees had been allowed to be at their workplace, as nationwide authorities employees had been labeled as key staff.

Nonetheless, a key goal set out within the pointers for workplaces that remained open was to “keep 2-metre social distancing wherever potential”. In-person conferences ought to solely happen if “completely crucial”, they mentioned, and if that was the case, a 2-metre distance must be saved always.

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Nonetheless, the image raises questions over that assertion. Bottles of wine are in proof, there’s a lack of social distancing, and 19 individuals are gathered in teams throughout the No 10 terrace and garden.

The Covid-19 Bereaved Households for Justice group mentioned funerals at the moment had been allowed fewer folks in attendance than there seemed to be within the Downing Road backyard, and it was “exhausting” to see the “fixed, flagrant disregard now we have all been held in”.

Jo Goodman, a co-founder of the group, mentioned: “It’s exhausting for not solely these of who us misplaced family members to Covid-19, however for everybody throughout the nation who sacrificed a lot to see the fixed, flagrant disregard now we have all been held in. We’re unsure how far more the prime minister expects us to take earlier than he’ll settle for that he must be open with the general public about these occasions.

“This supposed work assembly, with no pen, paper or laptop computer in sight (as a substitute changed with important cheese and wine) exhibits that he presided over a tradition of believing that the foundations utilized solely to different folks since early within the pandemic. When this picture was taken strangers needed to maintain dying family members palms, funerals had been allowed much less folks than within the Downing Road backyard that day and we couldn’t even hug one another for consolation.

“Many people fear that it might be too late for the prime minister to regain any credibility and authority to implement any future measures to deal with the pandemic. If that proves to be the case it will likely be time for him to contemplate what’s finest for the nation.”

Others vented their grief and anger on social media. Nazir Afzal, the previous chief prosecutor for the north-west of England, mentioned on Twitter: “Right here’s Boris Johnson having a gathering (?) in Might 2020 while the remainder of us had been complying with Covid guidelines which included not with the ability to attend my very own brothers funeral as a result of solely six of us might and we solely had 29 minutes to bury him earlier than the following household got here.”

One medic known as out the “absolute degree of contempt” demonstrated by the Downing Road image.

Others contrasted the get together to the lockdown guidelines others had been adhering to on the time.

The picture attracted ridicule from satirists and political commentators.





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Supply & Picture rights : https://www.theguardian.com/world/2021/dec/20/flagrant-disregard-bereaved-hit-out-at-pm-over-no-10-garden-party

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