Get everyone back to the office? 50,000 people have died, reminds James O'Brien

28 July 2020, 13:10 | Updated: 28 July 2020, 13:22

By Adrian Sherling

James O'Brien responded to the government's plea to get Britons back to work: "We've got 50,000 dead people."

A Daily Mail study found that dozens of British companies will not bring employees back to the office until the end of the year at the earliest.

That has left a number of city centre businesses struggling with the lower footfall, leading to the government calling on people to return to the office.

But James pointed out the government shouldn't have a say in where you work.

James O'Brien said employers are entitled to keep people at home
James O'Brien said employers are entitled to keep people at home. Picture: LBC / PA

Speaking on his LBC show, he said: "Most sensible people would go 'So what?'

"They've made a calculation based on their commercial activity that their business is not going to be affected negatively by continuing to keep people at home, therefore they're not going to risk their workforce's help.

"And that's the end of the conversation. Unless you're doing the bidding of Downing Street, in which case you run a headline saying 'Giants who have let fear keep UK PLC locked down'.

"What's the fear? We've got 50,000 dead people. I'd quite like not to become one of them. Or people I love to be added to that number.

"That's an irrational fear now is it? So talk me through why I can't go to Spain without being stuck at home for two weeks, even when I've come in from an island where I've got a lower risk of catching coronavirus than I have in my own home town. You can't, can you?"

Watch the full monologue at the top of the page.