Preston City Council Leader Pushes For Tier Two Designation

A Letter from Councillor Brown, Leader of Preston City Council: Evidence-based for a Tier 2 Designation for Preston from 2 December:

Following the Government’s announcement of the revised tier system for England as we leave the national lockdown on 2 December, I would like to take the opportunity to highlight Preston’s sustained achievement in reducing Covid transmission.

  • Daily incident rates reduced to 294.1 per 100,000
  • Percentage test positive down to 10.7
  • daily incidence in the over 60’s to 174 per 100,000

This data demonstrates a 37% reduction in daily incidence across a 7 day moving average, the largest reduction of any Lancashire authority.

In light of the data, combined with our demonstrated ongoing commitment to working with local, regional and national partners to support the district and drive rates down, that we strongly appeal for your support in positioning Preston in Tier 2.

This approach has enabled us to, significantly increase the rate of testing, through:

  • The provision of community testing sites
  • Extensive, targeted community engagement
  • Consistent, partnership approach to communications
  • Develop a successful regime of early engagement contact tracing
  • Support businesses to adapt to COVID-safe measures
  • Take enforcement action against businesses unwilling to comply

Since being placed under enhanced restrictions on the 7 August 2020, we have demonstrated a long-term, coordinated and robust approach to managing the pandemic.

Working with partners across the Lancashire Resilience Forum, community groups, business and faith groups we have worked tirelessly to support residents, communities and businesses through the significant challenges that the city has faced over recent months.

Evidence of pre-lockdown success with restrictions

The evidence demonstrates that the infection rates in Preston were beginning to reduce as a result of the original Tier 3 restrictions which were implemented from 17 October 2020, prior to the start of the second national lockdown.

As you will be aware, the old Tier 3 restrictions in effect become the new Tier 2 measures.

We firmly believe that the revised Tier 3 restrictions are an unnecessary and disproportionate measure to be placed on Preston. Instead, it is our position that the continued proactive, comprehensive partnership approach would be the most effective measure to ensure the continued reduction in rates, while limiting the already significant economic impact on the city as a whole, with particular impact on areas of deprivation and the hospitality sector.

The challenges of recent months to the entire region have been considerable, with disproportionate impact to Northern authorities.

We ask that moving forward decisions taken regarding necessary restrictive measures are taken with full consideration of their impact on our communities, businesses and economy. – Councillor Matthew Brown – Leader of the Council 

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