Sir Keir Starmer warns UK ‘needs to stay in lockdown’ until infection rate completely down

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Sir Keir Starmer has been calling for a three-week circuit breaker lockdown for weeks amidst the exponential rise of new coronavirus infections across England. Prime Minister Boris Johnson on Sunday announced new restrictions will be imposed next week and a review will take place on December 2. BBC host Andrew Marr questioned Sir Keir on whether he would support plans to lift the restrictions next month: “The next tough decision the Prime Minister is going to have to take is towards the end of this process about whether we come out.

“I just want to check. You have three criteria – infections down, hospital admissions down, R rate below one.

“If those things aren’t happening, in your view, should we stay in the lockdown or not?”

Sir Keir said: “I think we need to stay in the lockdown until the infection rate is below one. That’s what we did last time.

“I also say that when we come out of the lockdown, the Prime Minister and the Chancellor need to be further cavalier, there needs to be a more controlled exit.”

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Sir Keir reiterated the focus should remain on fixing the issues with test and tracing the Government has struggled with since the start of the pandemic.

He continued: “The best way of getting the infection rate below one, is to have test, trace and isolate working properly.

“We’ve pleaded with the Government for months to put this in the hands of local authorities, local directors of public health because they say, ‘look, we can do a better job than the Government system.

“There will be no effective exit on December 2 unless the Government uses this time to fix test, trace and isolate. They promised so much and delivered so little.”

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