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UK News 'We won't break the law': Burnham would accept Tier 3 if imposed on Greater Manchester

22:00  20 october  2020
22:00  20 october  2020 Source:   news.sky.com

England's Covid-19 R rate DROPS for second week

  England's Covid-19 R rate DROPS for second week The UK's chief scientific officer Sir Patrick Vallance said in a TV briefing today that social distancing and lockdown rules are keeping the R rate lower than it was in the spring outbreak.But the Government's chief scientific adviser warned that the epidemic is 'growing everywhere' and that more action must be taken to bring down the R rate, which is somewhere between 1.3 and 1.5 for the UK meaning cases will continue to surge exponentially.

Andy Burnham says he will keep to the law and "accept" Tier 3 coronavirus restrictions for Greater Manchester if the government imposes them.

The region's mayor told Sky News it was ministers' "prerogative" to announce the measures, if negotiations over the next few hours end in stalemate.

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Jeremy Corbyn's brother leads new demonstration against Covid lockdown

  Jeremy Corbyn's brother leads new demonstration against Covid lockdown The 73-year-old, who was previously fined £10,000 for his part in a previous rally, stood with a megaphone among the crowd that had gathered in Oxford Street earlier today. The anti-mask protestors, who were flanked by police, held placards that read 'burn your mask' and 'this is now tyranny'. The group is calling for an end to social distancing and face masks as well as wanting to halt any coronavirus vaccines. It comes as Londoners started adjusting to life in Tier 2 after waking up with more coronavirus curbs.

He and other local leaders have been given until midday today to reach an agreement on moving three million people into England's highest band of coronavirus controls.

Andy Burnham wearing glasses: Andy Burnham accused ministers of 'trying to penny pinch on Tier 3' © Imagebridge Andy Burnham accused ministers of 'trying to penny pinch on Tier 3'

Communities Secretary Robert Jenrick said last night there have been 10 days of talks in "good faith" but they are still in deadlock.

If there is no breakthrough, he suggested Prime Minister Boris Johnson could impose measures unilaterally as COVID-19 spreads through Greater Manchester and public health "continues to deteriorate".

a person standing in front of a sign: The government has set a deadline of midday © Imagebridge The government has set a deadline of midday

Responding, Mr Burnham told Kay Burley: "We wouldn't break the law… We would obviously have to accept that decision, in the end it's the government's prerogative."

Greater Manchester eyes millions in extra lockdown funding as talks continue

  Greater Manchester eyes millions in extra lockdown funding as talks continue Mayor Andy Burnham has pressed for a Commons vote to break the ‘impasse’.The Labour mayor was said to have had a “constructive” conversation with the Prime Minister’s chief strategic adviser, Sir Edward Lister, over the weekend and further talks have been scheduled for Monday.

But he warned the change would hurt "the lowest paid in society" like pub workers and taxi drivers, so Downing Street needs to pledge more financial support for firms forced to stop trading.

Gallery: Coronavirus (Covid-19) outbreak around the world (Photo Services)

"If you're going to impose a lockdown here it's going to cause certain harm to all the people I've mentioned," Mr Burnham said.

"I don't believe we can consign our residents to hardship in that way."

a man carrying a suitcase: The mayor is fighting for more financial support for firms and workers © PA The mayor is fighting for more financial support for firms and workers

Overnight, it emerged Mr Jenrick had offered £22m - around £8 per person - for "individuals, businesses, and the wider region" affected by the Tier 3 move.

Mr Burnham said the "late-night ultimatum" was "a bit provocative" and accused ministers of "trying to penny pinch", but revealed he is consulting today with other local politicians and they will respond with "what we think is a fair figure".

a group of people walking down a sidewalk next to a sign: Greater Manchester could follow Lancashire into Tier 3 © Reuters Greater Manchester could follow Lancashire into Tier 3

"I will respond as positively and constructively as I can," he promised.

Earlier, business minister Nadhim Zahawi said the government was offering Greater Manchester politicians "anything they're looking for" and urged them to "make this happen now".

Stay alert to stop coronavirus spreading - here is the latest government guidance. If you think you have the virus, don't go to the GP or hospital, stay indoors and get advice online. Only call NHS 111 if you cannot cope with your symptoms at home; your condition gets worse; or your symptoms do not get better after seven days. In parts of Wales where 111 isn't available, call NHS Direct on 0845 46 47. In Scotland anyone with symptoms is advised to self-isolate for seven days. In Northern Ireland, call your GP.

Covid-19 restrictions: The changing picture across the UK .
As England resists a national lockdown, Scotland moves towards a five-tier system and Wales continues with its 17-day ‘firebreak’ lockdown.The picture is changing on an almost daily basis with more areas being placed under higher restriction zones as talks with government continue.

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