Paul Davies MS, Leader of the Opposition in the Welsh Parliament, has outlined his conditions to a Wales-wide circuit breaker as speculation grows that the Welsh Government will be announcing a Wales-wide lockdown in the coming days, amid concern that the local lockdowns across Wales are failing to contain the virus with rises in all bar one of the lockdown counties.
Paul Davies MS said: "The Welsh Government's handling of this announcement is causing major concern to people across Wales, especially to the most lonely in our society and businesses who are struggling to recover from the pandemic. Clarity is urgently needed over the Welsh Government's circuit breaker."
The Welsh Conservatives have outlined the following proposals that the Welsh Government need to confirm in order to make a circuit breaker effective but also proportionate. The Welsh Government must:
- Release the data underpinning the proposals, with proper explanations, not soundbites, on how it will operate and how it will make a difference if the lockdown is for a month. There then must be a review after 2 weeks and 3 weeks. If it isn’t working, it should be dropped. The Welsh Government needs to be honest when things aren’t working.
- Provide a financial package to support businesses adversely affected. The Welsh Government has had an extra £4 billion from the UK Government since March. If they are unilaterally deciding to pursue a circuit breaker then they must ensure comprehensive support is available.
- Give time to public services to adapt before introducing the circuit breaker and be specific about what work would then be done during the lockdown to make sure it is effective.
- Fully consider the urgent resumption of shielding in Wales, with a substantial package of support to ensure the financial, physical, and mental well-being of the most at risk is protected, instead of a Wales-wide circuit breaker.
Matt Smith is a Conservative who stood for Parliament and the National Assembly for Wales. He was a policy analyst at Vote Leave. He has written about Welsh politics for The Telegraph, Conhome, BrexitCentral, CAPX, GlobalVisionUK, Institute of Welsh Affairs and Gwydir. Read more about Welsh politics at www.mattsmith.org.uk/news.