Independent SAGE is urging UK residents to rethink Christmas plans as infections continue to surge in parts of the UK, warning that there is a “very real danger of a third wave of the pandemic” if people take advantage of three household rule – pointing out that just because you can meet up under Government rules doesn’t mean it is safe to do so.
The scientists are urging members of the public to meet outdoors where they are able, which they say is far safer than meeting indoors, and called for the Government to support this with a fund to create outdoor community events, and said that families who decide to meet up must be advised how to keep their homes safe.
Independent SAGE is calling for a ‘pandemic fuel allowance’ so that people can keep their homes ventilated while at the same time turning up the heating to keep warm.
“Right now we are heading towards disaster,” said Professor Stephen Reicher of the University of St Andrews. “Given high levels of infection across the country and the increasing levels in some areas (such as London) it is inevitable that if we all do choose to meet up over Christmas then we will pay the price in the New Year.”
Professor Reicher added: “We need an urgent rethink about the Christmas break. Government must clarify the risks involved in indoor mixing and stress the fact that households can get together doesn’t mean that they should. They should provide the information and support to help people make the decisions that best keep themselves, their families and their communities safe. And for many of us, the right decision will be to show our love by waiting until we can meet and hug and celebrate without danger.”
About Independent SAGE:
Independent SAGE is a group of scientists who are working together to provide independent scientific advice to the UK government and public on how to minimise deaths and support Britain’s recovery from the COVID-19 crisis. Sir David King, the former Chief Scientific Adviser to the UK government, chairs the group and oversees its reports.