Today’s BBC Breakfast saw Louise Minchin joined by colleague Dan Walker to give the latest news updates. Minchin spoke to Defence Secretary Mr Wallace via video link and was keen to find out more about what would happen if the UK starts to end its lockdown later this week. The UK has been in lockdown for six weeks now to stop the spread of coronavirus and to protect the NHS. Minchin wanted to know what measures would be put in place to keep Britain safe.
She began: “Can I also talk to you, you mentioned about how we get out of this, and we know that business leaders have been able to see some of the government’s proposals in order to get back to work.
“Employers will not be required to maintain social distancing of two metres between workers. How would those employees be safe?”
“Well, I think there are a range of methods to do that,” Mr Wallace replied.
“When you go to your supermarket, you’re not two metres away from the person on the till and they use shielding in that example. I mean that is quite a nifty way of doing it.
“There’s a shield between you and the till. So I think there is lots of ways.
- Coronavirus Italy: Is Italy still in lockdown?
“There is PPE and there’s use of time, so the two metre rule is partly driven by length of time of proximity to another person. You know, the further away you are from someone, the longer you can be with them, the closer you are, the higher the likelihood of you catching something is.
“So, time is another method. You could be closer than two metres but not for long at all or indeed, there are a range of ways to do this.
“If it is very vital that you work alongside each other then potentially, things like the shields that you see in the supermarket or indeed PPE is a way forward.
“But of course, if you are tested, and we tested a whole workforce when they went on the Queen Elizabeth Aircraft carrier last week. If you have tested and you have started a clean baseline then you can of course look at other ways.”
But Minchin wasn’t satisfied as she jumped in to ask: “So can I also then ask you, the two metre rule, is it being looked at, and is face masks, we know the Labour party are asking you to look at getting face masks possibly. Is that being looked at?”
“We are looking at all, the first thing this week is the analysis of the testing and the science and the statistics of where we are,” Mr Wallace replied.
He went on to add to explain in more detail the steps the government are taking to take stock of where the UK is in terms of fighting the virus.
As Mr Wallace continued to chat about the “tolerance level,” Minchin jumped in to pull him back to her question
“Can I just take you back to part of my question, which was, are you looking at public masks for the public?” Minchin demanded to know.
“Are you looking at finding them and sourcing them?”
Mr Wallace hit back: “Well right now we are sourcing masks. We are looking at that discussion, Labour have raised it with the trade unions and so have some colleagues that whether face masks make a significant difference is part of that calculation.
“In the meantime, we are trying to source as many masks as possible. Of course masks should be distributed to the key workers first, NHS staff and care staff first.
Create your own survey at doopoll.co
- Louise Minchin: BBC Breakfast host speaks out on challenging move
“But there are debates around the effectiveness of masks, part of it is about confidence building. If you wear a mask, you may feel more confident about going back to work and therefore it is a useful tool in encouraging the economy to lift.”
He continued: “We are definitely looking at masks and PPE and a whole range of issues around lifting the lockdown.”
“So masks for members of the public, just really quickly, yes or no?” Minchin asked once more.
Mr Wallace replied: “Well it is under consideration,” before Minchin moved on with the interview.
BBC Breakfast airs daily on BBC One at 6am.
Source: Read Full Article