Move to three-tier system welcomed in Norfolk as cases keep rising
Norfolk County Council’s leader has welcomed the move to a three-tier system of coronavirus restrictions, whilst urging residents to be vigilant and observe the rules laid out by Government.
In statement to the Commons on Monday, Prime Minister Boris Johnson confirmed the introduction of the new alert levels – medium, high and very high – depending on local infection rates.
The PM added that “new financial support” worth around £1 billion would be made available to local authorities in England.
Following the statement, county council leader Andrew Proctor said that he welcomed the approach.
“I welcome the clarity provided by the Government through its new tiered levels of localised measures, linked to local case levels,” he said.
“I also welcome the economic support that is being made available to areas that face the strictest measures.
“What we want to see is more local involvement in the decision making, as it’s local councils that know their areas best.
While reflecting that the county as a whole is performing much better than some other areas, Cllr Proctor urged residents to stick to the rules, adding that “Norfolk cannot afford to be complacent”.
“Norfolk’s rates are still low compared to the national average and compared to the worst affected areas in northern England,” he said. “Like every part of the country, Norfolk’s cases are rising, so we cannot afford to be complacent.
“I would urge everyone to continue to remain vigilant, so we can all continue to protect Norfolk.
“We must all continue to wash our hands, wear face coverings when required to and observe social distancing.
“The county council and its partners are taking prudent measures now to attempt to limit the impact of Covid-19 over the winter.”
Officials in Suffolk, which like Norfolk is tier one, also welcomed the new system, but urged the Government to adress the failings of the test-and-trace system.
Paul Simon, head of communications at Suffolk Chamber of Commerce said: “That Suffolk is in an area designated as tier one will provide some breathing space for our business community, especially those companies in at-risk’ sectors such as hospitality.
“But with Covid-19 infection rates in the east rising steeply, it is absolutely imperative that the Government sorts out the test-and-trace system once and for all.”