Yesterday in Parliament I spoke in the general debate on Covid. Later this week we will be debating the Corona Virus Act which was the emergency legislation brought in during March to give new powers to Government in that emergency situation.
I used yesterday as a chance to get on the record my concerns about the impact on people’s mental, physical and financial wellbeing. I know many people are really suffering with loneliness and isolation, and here in Romsey and Southampton North there are many groups who could be helping with that, but because of the current restrictions they cannot meet. I am thinking specifically of the many choirs and orchestras we have in the area, and I have received many representations from members who are desperate to get back to the activities they love.
I also raised the plight of the entertainment and events industry, having visited Phoenix Bus Services last week. When Covid is over we will want and need to resume all those normal activities in the events sector which give us such enjoyment. I recognise that events cannot currently go ahead, but when they can again the industry will need the services that are often provided by SMEs. They need intervention from the Chancellor in order to survive, to keep the jobs in place for all those employed, to be able to maintain premises and pay overheads. I do think we need more clarity on what constitutes viability.