Lisa Nandy: "Lives could have been saved" if quarantine was introduced sooner

9 May 2020, 09:53 | Updated: 9 May 2020, 09:56

By Seán Hickey

The Shadow Foreign Secretary told LBC that people are frightened to travel to the UK due to weak quarantine rules.

Lisa Nandy insisted that the UK was "quite slow to learn the lessons of this virus" from other countries in the early stages of the coronavirus pandemic. News came today that the government will implement a 14 day quarantine for people arriving into UK airports but the Shadow Foreign Secretary insisted that "it's taken weeks of asking the government to do that" after opposition pressure to do so for some time.

Ms Nandy told Andrew Castle that "some lives could have been saved" should there have been a faster UK response. She added that many people who are stranded abroad are "anxious to travel back on planes where there's no social distancing measures" because when they do arrive in the UK, they "are frightened they're putting their families at risk."

"It's really important we're protecting people" the Shadow Foreign Secretary pointed out, adding that the government's support for workers stuck at home has to be better.

"Would you say the furlough scheme has been a success" Andrew asked Ms Nandy. She went on to insist that although the scheme is good, the people who are on the furlough scheme have "also got to have a job to come back to, and the business loan scheme has proved to be problematic." "They'll find at the end of this they're out of work" she said, after many business owners have spoke about the difficulties they've faced in trying to get support to last through lockdown.

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Lisa Nandy was giving her views in advance of Boris Johnson's lockdown statement on Sunday. "What do people need to hear tomorrow evening" Andrew asked Ms Nandy.

The Shadow Foreign Secretary told Andrew that the Prime Minister needs to "be clear about the basis of the advice" for the public. She added that she is not sure there will be a comprehensive lifting of lockdown as the UK still has a long way to go.

She pointed out that if the PM tells the public that there will be no easing of lockdown, "he needs to explain to people why." "If lockdown continues we need to follow the science" Ms Nandy said, hinting that there needs to be faster and clearer action from the government on how we should move forward to reduce the spread.

Ms Nandy added that "people need to know that when lockdown measures are lifted that they're going to be safe" insisting that there are some circumstances at this moment in time where the public aren't confident in the government's response.