Council leader fears covid rules were relaxed to distract people from Downing Street’s lockdown parties

Green council leader Phélim Mac Cafferty has blasted the government for easing covid rules when cases are still high across the country.

He made his criticisms as Brighton and Hove City Council’s Policy and Resources (Recovery) Sub-Committee met at Hove Town Hall yesterday afternoon (Thursday 20 January).

Councillor Mac Cafferty said that the Green administration “completely disagrees” with the government’s plan to ease “Plan B” restrictions next week.

From next Thursday (27 January), covid passports would no longer be required for night clubs and large events.

People would no longer be advised to work from home and face masks would no longer be mandatory in enclosed or crowded spaces.

Face mask restrictions have already eased in secondary schools.

Councillor Mac Cafferty said that the government was relaxing the rules in response to the scandal about lockdown parties at 10 Downing Street rather than as a result of scientific advice.

He said: “It is obvious this is being done to distract from the endless parties disguised as work meetings in 10 Downing Street and to try to save the Prime Minister’s political career.

“That decision to reverse restrictions comes as there are no extra pledges on ventilation for schools – 300,000 children are out of school in just the second week of term. We only saw just yesterday (Wednesday 19 January) 438 deaths nationally.

“We are concerned the government is once again shutting the stable door after the horse has bolted.

“Yes, cases have gone down – but so has reported testing, so it follows when there are less tests, there are less cases.

“We’re not out of the woods by a long shot, and we don’t want to end up here again.

“We’ve remained a mask friendly city. We have remained so as we put our residents’ health and safety first.

“I would plead with everyone to continue to look out for each other. There are still many people who are clinically vulnerable.

“On top of all of this, we are contending with huge staff shortages throughout the health and care system due to sickness.

“That is underlined by the fact there are more than 93,000 vacancies in the NHS.”

Councillor Mac Caffery encouraged people to keep testing and to take up the offer of covid-19 vaccines.

A “Week of Walk Ins” vaccination clinics are taking place at sites across the city, including Churchill Square, with details of locations on the Sussex Health and Care Partnership website.

  1. Chaz. Reply

    So why didn’t Phil say that the city would be in lockdown then?
    Nah, he just wants his name in the media.
    If you want to be in national politics, go play there.

    Locally we want graffiti wiped away, bins emptied, no drunks and druggies in doorways and a clean up all over.
    You know, the important stuff we pay for.

  2. Rostrum Reply

    Well… He would say that wouldn’t he…..

  3. Janet Jacobs Reply

    I wish Phelim would concentrate on the task at hand instead of giving epidemiology advice to residents. The city looks an unkempt mess. Can the Greens please sort out graffiti, litter and beggars everywhere.

    Providing you are up to date with your vaccine schedule covid is less serious than a common cold. For those that haven’t that’s their choice.

    Thank goodness everything is now returning to normal so people can protect their jobs.

  4. Christopher Hawtree Reply

    It is in the nature of the virus that another variant will appear soon – and the government (if one can call it that) is not preparing for it.

    • Peter Challis Reply

      As you are an obvious expert in virology and epidemiology (like homeopathic Caroline Lucas and whatever Phelim knows anything abouy 😉), what do you think the government should be doing about the next variation of Covid-19 or, indeed, whatever next global pandemic befalls us?

      Perhaps regular 2 week lockdowns? What about banning all public transport? Would you suggest mandatory vaccinations? Perhaps compulsory facemasks and everyone working from home?

      Await with great interest the recommendations of the Green Party scientists and medical experts 🙄

  5. nick Reply

    He really doesn’t understand how to read statistics and information, does he? We know this from the OSR, valley gardens and other local projects. Now he demonstrates this worrying characteristic here once again. As we know with covid, cases come first, then some hospitalisations and then, regrettably for some death.

    The claim our local leader makes is that testing isn’t working (despite more than just about anywhere in the world) so things could be getting worse. Well, if that were true hospitalisations would be rising. But this isn’t, they’ve been falling for weeks. Ditto intensive care cases with covid – they are at the lowest level of 6 months.

    I know that the greens want to keep us all in permanent lockdown with travel just limited to cycling/walking distance. Well, apart from the “green” “leaders” who believe they are more equal than some and should be allowed to fly. Even on domestic flights where good rail links exist.

    So, please, stop showing your limits. Please stop damaging the ecological cause by hypocrisy and basic errors. Resign, and resign now

    GINO – green in name only

  6. Adam Campbell Reply

    Phelim has such a thin skin, he really isn’t cut out for public life. He just blocked me on his bitter Twitter feed for pointing out that he is not without sin regarding his recent plane jaunt. One rule for him and another for the rest of us. No wonder we hold all politicians in such low regard. But some are lower than others 🤣

  7. Jack Williams Reply

    When will this lying, cheating hypocrital moron shut up and bvgger off out of Brighton?

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