Sir Keir Starmer calls for a national consensus on getting UK back to work

5 May 2020, 09:05 | Updated: 5 May 2020, 09:20

By Adrian Sherling

Sir Keir Starmer is calling on Boris Johnson to reach a "national consensus" on what happens next with the UK's lockdown measures.

The Labour leader says people around the country need reassurances about how the restrictions are eased.

He's put together a seven-point plan on how to keep people safe as they return to work.

Speaking to Nick Ferrari, he said: "We had a consensus going into lockdown and I think to reassure the public, we want to attempt to get a consensus coming out.

"In order for that to work, I've set seven principles that I think are really important.

Nick Ferrari spoke to Sir Keir Starmer about his plan for a national consensus
Nick Ferrari spoke to Sir Keir Starmer about his plan for a national consensus. Picture: LBC

"For example, there should be a national safety standard at work, because I sense people are really anxious about going back to work, about their safety and what it might mean for their family.

"So that they're reassured that the right measures are in place on social distancing, hand washing, safety equipment if that's needed, we need a standard.

"But also, we absolutely have to take measures to make sure the infection rate doesn't take off again.

"We think consensus is best here. Get political parties, get trades unions, get businesses all lined up if possible behind some principles so that when we get to what's happening next, we can give maximum reassurance to the people."

Sir Keir's seven principles for getting Britain back to work are:

1) Keep people safe
2) A strong plan for testing and tracing in the community
3) Protects key and essential workers
4) Supports people's livelihoods, jobs and businesses
5) Clearly explains any easing or tightening of lockdown restrictions
6) Has national plan for developing and distributing a vaccine
7) Gets us ready for winter flu.

Nick asked if companies should face sanctions if they don't meet appropriate safety guidelines for employees.

Sir Keir responded: "There needs to be some sort of policing. We've all accepted in the last few weeks that the rules the government have put in place for when we're out and about have to be enforced and there's been a healthy debate about the way the police have done that. By and large, I think they've done a good job.

"The idea that as soon as you walk into your workplace, there's no enforcement in place is obviously wrong in principle."

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LBC have an exclusive story of how a Labour councillor is being formally disciplined by the party after being filmed working with Conservatives to deliver food to vulnerable people.

A concerned Sir Keir responded: "That's the first I've heard of it, but now you've raised it with me, I'm going to make it my business to find out what's gone on there."

Watch his full interview at the top of the page.

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