No Second Lockdown Without A Full Parliamentary Debate

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The Coronavirus Act, passed last April, gives the government far-reaching powers to combat the threat posed by Covid-19. Six months later, we have an immense amount of additional knowledge, not only about the virus itself, but also about the strategies for dealing with it. This new information will naturally influence the way we manage it.

The first national lockdown has provided a case study for the effectiveness of this strategy. It has also shown the harmful impacts. These include a sharp rise in cases of clinical depression, domestic abuse and large numbers of people unemployed.

Furthermore, we are now beginning to see the results from countries that followed alternative strategies for combating Covid-19.  Our MPs must be given the opportunity to analyse and discuss these case studies in the chamber so that we can be sure, before embarking on a second lockdown, that it is the right course of action.

Our MPs must also be given the chance to express the voice of their constituents. In order for the people of this country to have confidence in a second national lockdown we need to know the case has been made.

This momentous decision must be made democratically not through the use of  emergency powers, which place enormous authority in the hands of very few people and remove the requirement for parliamentary scrutiny.

Holding a parliamentary debate before a second lockdown is vital to maintaining public confidence in our politicians and support for their actions.