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tv   BBC News  BBC News  April 19, 2020 5:00pm-6:01pm BST

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‘w r "nit wrult wit wrum wit faw— care workers who might not feature in some of the bigger, national planning. so they are a critical component of this. i do know there have been two drops out recently and there are two more, three drops planned for tomorrow, the 20th of april and hopefully another one the same day, a fourth drop. these are ongoing so the lrf who have experienced the receipt of ppe, it doesn't mean it is forgotten, it is on an ongoing basis. going back to some of my earlier comments, it is important we don't just some of my earlier comments, it is important we don'tjust drop a certain amount of ppe in one area or a few areas where they can be used, and leave others with front line staff unsupported. so it is inevitable, but where there are potential shortage supplies internationally, we want to do more frequent drops to ensure that critical staff on the front line are given the right equipment and have
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that. that inevitably means there will be smaller quantities over shorter periods of time until individual ppe line stabilise. is there anything further he would like to ask? just on the reopening of schools, if i could? is the timing of that dependent on you feeling that schools have an adequate supply of cleaning materials, hand sanitiser and that sort of thing? if so, what guidelines are being drawn up so, what guidelines are being drawn up to give to the schools and the trusts to make sure that schools can be as safe as possible for parents and children and staff when they do eventually reopen? kit, we have already issued a lot of guidance on this and it is available on the gov.uk website. if you want to be able to access, i can organise someone able to access, i can organise someone to send you a link in terms of how we have been advising schools in order to deal with the challenges. because we must not
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forget, many thousands of schools have continued to remain open over the last few weeks in order to be able to support vulnerable children and the children of critical care workers as well. but we constantly update that advice. i have touched upon the fact that the key element as to when the decision is to open schools will be when those five tests that were set out by the first secretary of state at the end of last week, when they are met, we are ina last week, when they are met, we are in a position to look at how we change the restrictions that we are currently operating under. i would like to take the opportunity to thank everyone for taking the time to tune in, but also for making sure that they have continued to adhere to the guidance of the government, making sure that we that is the end of today's uk
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government briefing from ten downing street held with the education secretary gavin williamson anthony harris, the deputy chief medical officerfor england. question dominated by personal protective equipment and its availability and the guidance surrounding its use and any reassurance that can be offered to health care professionals, also questions about how prepared the uk was and government action and thinking during the month of february as the pandemic took hold in different parts of the world. let's turn to our chief political correspondent vicki young in westminster. is in westminster. vicki, given it was gavin williamson the education secretary at the helm, what did you make of the handling over when schools in england will open? he was pretty blunt on the day before most peoples are preparing to go back for what would be the summer term, it will not be in any way normal. he was blunt, i cannot give you a date for when schools reopening. there has been a lot of speculation about
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reopening schools, namely primary schools, may be for people to have exams next year, that might be the first step on the path to some sort of normal life. but he wasn't willing to go there at all and that chimes with the message we have had from cabinet ministers from the last few days, saying we're not at the stage where we have passed the peak. they have maybe reached it, but the levels of cases may be plateauing in some way, but it too early. they don't want to dilute the message about social distancing and staying at home. they think it is too soon to do that. he wasn't even willing to do that. he wasn't even willing to say what criteria they will be looking at before they make that decision to reopen schools. but i think what they'd come across is their concern about vulnerable children, those children who might be at home and are not getting the support from their families, from the parents that others are and also when it comes to learning as well. an important message there about extra funding for the nspcc and
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their helpline. i think vulnerable children is a particular concern and gavin williamson making it plain, of course he wants to get schooled back up course he wants to get schooled back up and running as soon as possible but it doesn't sound like it is going to be in the next couple of weeks. we are looking out towards that next review when the three weeks is up which would be in two and a half weeks' time, before we will get any indication on how they plan to do this and also going back to michael gove's comments earlier, saying the uk was taking a deliberately cautious approach. you get the impression they will be looking at other countries who will be opening up in some areas and they will see what happens there before they decide what happens here. vicky, thank you very much. let's explore the issue of protective equipment. it has been an ongoing issue for the government throughout the course of this pandemic. chris hobson, the chief executive of nhs providers, the
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membership organisation, can join us. you have raised the alarm in recent days about some personal protective equipment stocks being close to exhaustion. what did you make of what you heard this afternoon? i thought jenny harries made an important point, which is the debate so far has basically been a homogenous hole. i think she's absolutely right to identify that we probably need to get a bit more sophisticated in the debate we are having. let me introduce three pieces of sophistication. the trust that i represent, 217 acute mental health ambulance trust, broadly speaking with the exception of gowns, actually they have access to the ppe they need. there is a problem with ganz. that is the second nuance i would bring in. we raise the fact we could go that we thought that stocks were running low. new guidance was issued on friday the trust were following. but we know in some places there critically low levels of stock. the
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third nuance i'd like to introduce, you really important one, is that it is very different, asjenny harries was saying, to try to deliver ppe to 50,000 gp surgeries, care homes and nursing homes and hospices under the volu nta ry nursing homes and hospices under the voluntary organisations. 0ur national leaders have been very clear because of the logistical challenge involved in that, it has been more difficult. they recognise that however hard they have been trying, they've been trying really hard, there are still some gaps. and i think we've always believed that over the last week or so that the debate on pp he has got rather stock. 0n the one hand the government has been saying, look at the hundreds of millions of items we have been delivering. then on the other hand you've got quite rightly individual members of staff saying, i haven't got my ppe. the reality is both are right. we think it would be helpful to recognise that in some areas this is going well, but in other areas it isn't. and gowns
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being a crucial part which is not going as well as people would like. she used the term a more adult conversation should be taking place throughout ppe. there has been a lot of interest in this big shipment of 84 tonnes of equipment that should be arriving from turkey today, hopefully now tomorrow. give us a sense of how long 84 tonnes would sustain the nhs? well, we think, and we have said this publicly this afternoon, we don't think it's helpful to focus on an individual consignment. there was a reason for that, which is bitter experience over the last few weeks has demonstrated that because of the erratic nature of the supply, you can't really count on garins being ready to be distributed to the front line until they've actually arrived in this country. you've opened up the boxes and checked that actually they are the gowns they say they are and the numbers are meant to be
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there. and they have passed safety tests. last week there was meant to bea tests. last week there was meant to be a consignment of 200,000 gowns arriving from china. and when they arrived they were only 20,000. what we have also discovered in the past is that some of the consignments that failed have failed to —— safety tests. can we just only talk about garins arriving when they've arrived, they've been checked and gone through a safety test? to be frank, i'm not entirely sure it's helpful unless the secretary of state for education as got information that makes people at the centre in nhs england about exactly saying for sure these garins going to arrive. thank you so much. let's turn now to labour mp rachel reeves, the shadow chancellor of the duchy of lancaster. thanks for being with us. we have no date on the reopening
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of schools in england. if you were in government now, would you be giving one at this point?|j in government now, would you be giving one at this point? i don't think it's possible for government to give a date at the moment and i accept that the whole of government is not in a position at the moment to announce dates until we can see those numbers of new cases coming down. that wouldn't be appropriate. but it would be good to see from the government a little bit more thinking about the order in which some of these rules are unlocked and can be relaxed, particularly some of theissues can be relaxed, particularly some of the issues which he was pressed on in the press conference today about whether schools will have to be open over the summer, whether the number of children in school at any one time would have to be less than what it is at the moment, so some children were going to school one week and others another week, it is those sorts of issues that schools need more information on and parents do as well to be able to plan. people have abided by the rules. and we wa nt people have abided by the rules. and we want to now, the public want to
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know, that there is some kind of light at the end of the tunnel. and they want government to level with them about what is happening. michael gove said earlier today that hospitality would be reopened towards the end. i was sort of hoping we do still have rachel reeves with us. that line is looking rather frozen, unfortunately. rachel reeves, shadow chancellor the duchy of lancaster. earlier in the news briefing we heard from gavin williamson, the education secretary, and also jenny harries williamson, the education secretary, and alsojenny harries the deveney chief medical officerfor and alsojenny harries the deveney chief medical officer for england. and earlier on today we had another 596 deaths announced. that is the smallest increase to more than two weeks. you're watching bbc news. now it's time for a look at the weather with chris fawkes. hello there. the early morning cloud has cleared out of the way to reveal these beautiful blue sky is pretty
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much nationwide. walking norfolk spotted this. the only place that held onto some cloud this afternoon was northern ireland. this is what bringing the dry weather and it's going nowhere for very fast. that means for the week ahead it is looking drive with plenty of sunshine day by day. 0vernight tonight we are going to give clear skies. it never really get that call for most of us because it is going to be quite a breezy night. the breeze keeps the temperatures from falling too far. five in norwich, seven in london, some frost in the countryside in scotland in some of the sheltered lens. 0n countryside in scotland in some of the sheltered lens. on monday, the area of high pressure is actually strengthening. but to the south low pressure is moving north into the mediterranean. that will squeeze the isobars together. that means it will bea isobars together. that means it will be a windier day for us here in the uk. for monday plenty of dry weather. for many of us sunshine from dawn to dusk, that they could
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be patchy cloud from the channel islands may be brushing into parts of cornwall and devon. for most it stays sunny but pretty windy with 30 to 40 mile an hour gusts. from an easterly direction. that is significant because those winds are working on a chile sees. the north sea only seven to 9 degrees. that will keep some of our eastern shores on the cool side. temperatures for example in aberdeen and hull are 12 oi’ example in aberdeen and hull are 12 or 13 celsius. away from the north sea coast it gets a bit warmer. cabbages could reach a high of 90 degrees. at these temperatures are still tempered by a degree by those brisk winds which will be back again on tuesday. tuesday similar day weather wise. maybe a few showers putting into the channel islands. but there is some uncertainty about that. for most it is dry and sunny. if anything it will get warmer. temperatures could reach 20 degrees in cardiff. the eastern coasts on the cool side for the onshore winds.
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with high pressure staying with us for the rest of this week and the winds following light, it tends to get warmerfrom mid winds following light, it tends to get warmer from mid week onwards with temperatures pushing into the 20s for england and wales, warming up 20s for england and wales, warming up in scotland and northern ireland too. in the last hour, we've been hearing from the education secretary gavin williamson, at downing street, with the latest government update on efforts to tackle coronavirus. here's a reminder of the main points from today's downing street briefing. latest figures show that a further 596 people have died in uk hospitals having tested positive for coronavirus. that brings the total number of deaths to 16,060.
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mr williamson said that he wants ‘nothing more than to see schools getting back to normal‘, but that he was unable to give a date when that would happen. the government is ordering laptops to help disadvantaged young people sitting key exams. there is no specified number of laptops available, or set budget, and many exams have been cancelled. it will be up to schools or local authorities to decide who needs help with access to a computer. mr williamson described young people who have left care, or are about to, as ‘really vulnerable‘ and said a further £1.6 million has been given to childline and the nspcc to help children and adults who are seeking advice. gavin williamson also addressed the issue of personal protective equipment for health staff, when he was asked by the bbc‘s health editor why more wasn‘t done to stock up beforehand. well, what we have seen, what we have seen over the last few months is an enormous effort, it is a national effort, but it is also an international effort to secure ppe from right around the globe. but we
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have seen so many brilliant british businesses repurposed themselves in order to be able to provide it and we have seen many educational settings also being able to do it. but the government, from the first moment we were in a situation where the scientific advice was highlighting to us that we were facing a real challenge in terms of the coronavirus and this could potentially evolve into a pandemic, every resource of government has been deployed to notjust expanding what we need in terms of ppe, but also ventilators and we have seen a massive growth in the number of ventilators that we have available in our hospitals, and keep adding and building to the stock of what we‘ve got. let‘s hear now what mr williamson said about that offer of free laptops and tablets now — he explained that it was to help children from disadvantaged backgrounds across england to learn from home during the lockdown. 0ur our first 0urfirst priority has our first priority has always been protecting the well—being of
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children and young people. but particularly, those vulnerable young people with special educational needs or a social worker. schools are open for them and we are working to make sure those who should attend to make sure those who should attend to do so. places are available for children of critical workers, too. with up to 130,000 children in school every single day, schools are helping to keep the country moving. i recognise all the challenges that families will be facing at the moment and we are determined to support parents who are helping their children learn from home. i think we all know how difficult that can be. the bbc has developed resources for families as part of the most comprehensive education package in the bbc‘s history. available on tv and online from tomorrow morning. and to make sure
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as many children as possible can access online learning, we are ordering laptops to help disadvantaged young people who sit key exa ms disadvantaged young people who sit key exams next year. we will also provide laptops and tablets for those children with social workers and care leavers to help them stay in touch with the services they need. keeping them safe, as well as supporting home learning. gavin williamson, and i say england because he has only responsibility for schools in england and not other parts of the uk. helen carter is deputy head at burnage academy in manchester where over half of pupils will qualify for the laptop scheme. your reaction to the announcement? it was met with open arms. any support we can give to our pupils across the country is very, very welcome. a concern is that it is pupils who have been away from
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school now for four weeks and i would have liked to have seen this earlier, but at least it is happening now. it does assume that this will bridge the gap between disadvantaged and others. it will go some way, but many, many pupils across the country do not have a quiet, safe learning space at home. so although pupils will be able to access these resources and use the computers to support their learning, it is no substitute for the safe, calm space that a school provides. how much of an issue has been over the last month with kids at home and you trying to give them some kind of structured programme of education? have you had a real issue with kids in households where theyjust don‘t have access to a computer? yes, we have. many parents and pupils have contacted the school to say that the only electronic device they have is a mobile phone, so we have people trying to access resources via an iphone, which is not ideal. so what
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we have done is we have printed has many resources as is needed and we had been driving those resources to the houses are pupils, knocking on the houses are pupils, knocking on the door, delivering them at a socially distant space. of course. but there are real practical needs for this as you say. slightly confused or baffled perhaps is the right word by something mr williamson said when he referred to them being useful for exams, williamson said when he referred to them being usefulfor exams, i didn‘t think exams were now taking place. i assume he was referring to the exams for year ten and year 12 students. but i will reiterate there is no substitute for the actual teaching that takes place in a classroom. i mean, the learning that pupils will do at home, they will have questions they will need to ask a teacher. and there will be a delay ina a teacher. and there will be a delay in a teacher being able to answer those questions as a child will have to submit them electronically. the spontaneity of a classroom will be lost here. and also, teachers
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prepare lessons for the individual needs of their pupils. now, the online resources that are being prepared and published by the government are almost a one size fits all approach and thatjust is not something schools do, schools cater for the not something schools do, schools caterfor the individual not something schools do, schools cater for the individual needs of all their pupils. just on this question, you said anxiety about the longer kids spend out of the classroom, there was raised a question of possibly it has been in the papers and denied by the government today in a sense they have not said they are planning to do this, of getting some schools back up and running in the middle of next month. and there was even a question raised during the course of the news conference which may have been heard by you about the possibility of effectively extending the school term into the summer to provide some compensation for the last classroom time over this term. the term that has just ended, the pre—easter term. what do you make of the practicalities of either of those? i mean, i don't think we
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should even entertain the idea of opening in may unless it is medically safe to do so. and we need to be guided by the science. i do believe the head teacher of the free school in london spoke out this week ina school in london spoke out this week in a teaching purse and said anyone who is suggesting schools could reopen the social distancing measures in place is perpetuating a lie. and i do agree with her. because it will be impossible to keep children two metres apart. so i think we need to look very strategically and when and how schools will open. and i hope that the government are doing what they are saying and involving schools and teachers in those discussions. it can‘t just be politicians teachers in those discussions. it can‘tjust be politicians that make those decisions, they do need to work with the sector. in terms of opening over the summer, that will ta ke opening over the summer, that will take negotiations with the unions andi take negotiations with the unions and i am sure that all teachers in this country want to do what‘s right for the pupils, but it must be when
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it is safe. i think now would be a really appropriate time to look strategically at reviewing the school year. certainly for next year. thinking, is it appropriate for year ten and year 12 students to do exams in the traditional month of may, could they be moved back to allow extra learning time next academic year? i think there are many things that need to be taken into consideration. yes, as you said, there is that question of the timing of the academic year and whether the current structure we have woodwork in the future. i was interested in what you said about social distancing because i spoke to a teacher in copenhagen and to be fair, she teaches nine—year—olds, but she said they had their first day back on wednesday and she said they banned certain things in the playground that just were they banned certain things in the playground thatjust were not practical, but they were hoping they could maybe social distancing work, but it was something that people we re but it was something that people were concerned about. it was going to affect how the school operated. yes, of course. i teach in a
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secondary school and it would be the question of policing that social distancing on the way to school. most of our children would be arriving by public transport. they will not, i assume, keep two metres apart from their friends having not seen them for such a long time. it isa seen them for such a long time. it is a very, very tricky area and i think sometimes, we do really need to just listen to the medical advice coming here. helen carter, thank you so much for speaking to us. let‘s speak to jimmy whitworth, he‘s a professor of international public health at london school of hygiene and tropical medicine. he‘s also a member of the world health organisation‘s scientific advisory group working on research to prevent epidemics. lessons we might learn. quite a few lessons need to be learnt from this one, i should lessons need to be learnt from this one, ishould imagine, when the lessons need to be learnt from this one, i should imagine, when the dust has finally settles. 0h, indeed. and i think we need to be starting to learn those lessons now and apply them as best we can. and we need to
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be thinking notjust about research about things like developing diagnostics or vaccines or therapeutic drugs, but about how well the different types of physical distancing that have been used in different countries around the world have worked. so, can you elaborate on that, when you say different kinds of social distancing, what has been done elsewhere that for example is not being done here? well, the uk is not being done here? well, the uk is somewhere in the middle, i would say, in terms of the strictness of social distancing that has been applied. for example, in france, you are not allowed out of the house u nless are not allowed out of the house unless you have got permission to go. and a photo id of where you are going to go. in paris, you are not allowed out to exercise except in the hours of darkness. we haven‘t gone to those kind of measures in
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the uk. whereas in places like sweden, it is a much more permissive environment and people are simply advised to keep apart from other people, but many shops and many bars and people, but many shops and many bars a nd restau ra nts people, but many shops and many bars and restaurants are still open. all of this is relevant, isn‘t it, if we are talking about the idea of gradually relaxing some of the restrictions? germany was talking at the end of last week about having a sort of two—week phased approach and every couple of weeks, you would see if the numbers are going up again and in which case, you might crackdown. 0ther hotspots where you impose more restrictions? do we need more diagnostic tools before we are ready to think seriously about relaxing the restrictions? yes, i do. i think it would be the responsible thing to do to wait until we had enough ppe forfront
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line staff, but also enough diagnostic tests that we can actually identify people who are infected. when we left some of the restrictions that we have at the moment, there is going to be more transmission. we don‘t want to get back into the situation we are in at the moment and that means we have to be able to identify cases and also their contact and make sure that they are isolated. i suppose one interesting question that is easy to say with hindsight, but it was striking to many people that when we had the initial reports of cases in china that became significant and they started to move to a lockdown, we still had people flying in from china. no attempt to follow those people or to track them in case they became infected. no use for example ofa became infected. no use for example of a passenger information which all travellers have to provide now if they are international, is that the sort of thing we need to consider to do infuture?
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sort of thing we need to consider to do in future? it could be. i think there is a question about balance here. i think when the international flights were coming in, from china, most of them were not coming from wuhan. they were stopped relatively early in the epidemic. but you are right, the individuals were simply given leaflets to alert them to the possibility that they might become sick with this while in the uk and what to do if they did so. i think with hindsight, public health authorities would have had more strict measures in place for international travel. the other point i wanted to pick up on is something you said a couple of minutes ago that when the restrictions are lifted, we can expect new infections. that might slightly alarm people, but in a sense from a point of view of dealing with a virus, it should not alarm people in itself, it is a question of our capacity to react,
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to treat and ensure we are always able to ensure we have enough health provision to deal with any cases that come up? yes. i think if we are thinking about starting to relax the kind of measures that we have in just a few weeks, maybe three weeks or maybe a little bit longer, then we are going to be in a situation where there are still cases that are occurring. and so they can still be transmission that can occur and we will have a population most of whom have not yet been infected. so we will still all be vulnerable and by lifting the restrictions, it will mean there is more chance of us catching it. talking to the professor earlier this afternoon from imperial college, he was saying that the percentage of the population who have had a virus are known to have had it is relatively lower compared to some other countries, and
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therefore the figures perhaps of infections are sadly deaths are lower than we might have expected if it had come into the publishing as we feared it might. that is true, andi we feared it might. that is true, and i think some of the measures that have been put in place have managed to slow down transmission, and therefore infection, and that has been really important to keep the number of deaths as low as we can. but the other side of that coin is that means a lot of people have not been infected, and so remain vulnerable. and until we not been infected, and so remain vulnerable. and untilwe have a vaccine, we cannot be confident, for any of those who have it be, what it might mean individually if we were to become infected. yes, there are no easy ways out of the lockdown that we have at the moment. unless there is a game changer, unless we have an effective vaccine that can be dish to the worry —— widely we have effective drugs that stop us
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becoming seriously sick. then yes, thatis becoming seriously sick. then yes, that is the situation. thank you so much for speaking to on bbc news. it‘s time for your questions answered now — and we can listen again to some of the advice that has been given on the financial issues you‘ve been bringing to us. thanks to the thousands of you who have been sending in questions, some of them about financial concerns due to coronavirus, and we have two experts to help answer some of them. jasmine birtles edit money my pie, and any sure is a financial agony aunt. thank you for both being here. any, starting with you, this is from
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ill furlong, i paid £100 deposit for my first holiday in ten years to italy for a week in august. the trouble, have moved at the final payment date to 30 days before the trip. iam payment date to 30 days before the trip. i am concerned they will take the balance from my card and i had not a raised travel insurance at the time of booking. if i take it out now, will i be covered? time of booking. if i take it out now, willl be covered? this is time of booking. if i take it out now, will i be covered? this is such a sad situation, it has happened to a sad situation, it has happened to a lot of people. in particularfor this person with their first holiday in years. what to do at this stage is wait—and—see. we have a time to go before that 30 days is up, i would hang on. they still have time, and that would mean losing the profit. that is a tough thing to happen, but if the holiday company cancels, they would either get a
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refu nd cancels, they would either get a refund from your credit card, so thatis refund from your credit card, so that is something to bear in mind. you have to act a bit firstly don‘t ta ke you have to act a bit firstly don‘t take a final payment from you if the holiday is to go ahead. the situation is still up in the air. we are getting some dropout on your line, but in essence you were saying it is conceivable if the holding company cancels, it is their responsibility. equally, in the worst that could happen, you could lose the deposit, which may be a lot of money. do has not had a holding for ten years but even so better losing the entire cost of the holiday. that make better than. this isa holiday. that make better than. this is a question from an anonymous person, someone who does not want to discuss their private national arrangement is on air. i am on a two year fixed mortgage contract which end in may. what should i do with the low interest rate translate into mortgages, and if so should ifix
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for long—term? mortgages, and if so should ifix for long-term? yes, there are some really good deals around at the moment. 0nline i have seen 1.5%, 2%, 2.596, moment. 0nline i have seen 1.5%, 2%, 2.5%, however a lot of their mortgage companies have pooled mortgages that have a high loan to equity rate. loan to value. it very much depends how much equity you already have in your home. if you're just looking for a six to present mortgage for example, there is quite a lot to look for. —— 60%. higher, a lot have gone for the moment. but if you do, it is a good idea to start looking now, because it is taking a long time to happen because if you get a new mortgage with a new companyjewel get a new mortgage with a new company jewel need to get a new mortgage with a new companyjewel need to have the play surveyed. surveyors are not generally going out at the moment,
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so generally going out at the moment, so there is a backlog. i would look now, personally i would fix for a good five years because rates are low, as long as you are looking for a relatively low loan to value. it isa gamble, a relatively low loan to value. it is a gamble, whatever you do, whether you fix i don't. nobody frankly knows what interest rates will do in the long or short—term. my feeling is that rates are going to continue to be low, at least for six months. but they will try and put them up as soon as they can. just on that, are you finding, i have heard anecdotally of mortgage companies asking for much larger deposits than people are inspecting. yes, this is the thing, they are worried, generally worried, because they are having to give these mortgage holidays to millions of mortgagors. they are looking for
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surety, they are looking for help wherever they can, and i think this is why they have pulled a lot of their high loan to value mortgages, so their high loan to value mortgages, so you their high loan to value mortgages, so you are their high loan to value mortgages, so you are looking at 70% plus, it is quite hard to find those mortgages, they have pooled them, forget that. annie, i promise you there is a non—travel question coming in bit further, but travel operators are thriving on people, this is from paul smith in northumberland. they are thriving on people not being able to afford the final payments because they have suddenly found their income has dropped through the floor or is even nonexistent. what can be done about this if you now cannot afford a final paperfor a this if you now cannot afford a final paper for a holiday that you boot pre—pandemic whenever thing looked fine and you thought your income was secure? again, this is the same problem as before, everything has changed since people have booked their holidays, and anything is uncertain. i think i
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ta ke anything is uncertain. i think i take issue that the holiday companies are doing well out of taking people‘s deposits, they are hurting very badly. that is possibly why we‘re finding that airlines are not giving refunds, they are giving people vouchers, they don‘t tightly have the cash flow or the money. we are possibly going to see a lot of them go bust. it is very if somebody cannot make that final payment, and i don‘t know when this holiday is, but if it is well in the future it may be that you can get some further borrowing from a credit card or loan, but otherwise i think you are just back to what you would bp pandemic, if you cannot afford it, you will have to cancel and possibly lose your deposit. the other thing, if they cancel, the holiday company, because they‘re not likely going to run that holiday, you would then have some recourse to a refund if they are still in business or to get a refund from your credit card. this
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from claire ashton, why is nothing be done to initially support parents who were forced to take time off from work and order to look after their children who are in our home? what you should be able to do, if you are a parent and you need to look after your children, you should be able to ask europe lawyer to follow you. so you know they are continuing their operations, if you need to look after your children, you can demonstrate that. —— furlough you. with a furlough, you get 80% of your salary but you are not working for the company, at the employer gets that money back from the government. as of this week, they can ask for it. this has been a problem for a lot of employers, in the past few weeks they have had to get the money out of their own pockets to pay their employers, i don't wait to get the money back from the government. but things are
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actually happening now, so that employers have only a short time to wait before they get their money back. i really would have a serious word with your employer, because they are not, they don't have to, but most of them are, and they really should be able to do that, because it is not going to cost them. good advice, a lot of people don‘t realise that they can proactively do that and go to their employer. they have a good case for doing that if the employer is not going to be finished losing in any case. annie, endon travel question. it is from lisa valenti in bromley. her mot was put on hold for six miles. if we are currently not having to travel to work, why are we still committed to pay car insurance if your car is not being used? you might or might know if your car is being used, but the insurers would say probably that you are using it for other things like shopping or essential trips. you would need insurance for that. some insurers
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also have reduced their premiums for some people, if they have got cover related to a high usage. if you are definitely not using your car, really not using it at all, you can get a statutory off road notice, which means you are getting your vehicle tax back. you are taking the car off the road, then you can cancel your insurance altogether. but your car has to be off the road, literally, you cannot have a part in the road outside your house. and you must have actually taken out this, you cannot just pay just must have actually taken out this, you cannotjust payjust might not pay your road tax or insurance. that is when we have not having to pay your insurance is taking the car off the road. i suspect that most people, although they have very little or lesser usage, are probably still using their carfor little or lesser usage, are probably still using their car for something and they will need insurance for
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that. are the banks allowed to demand additional securities, asked clive steele of knebworth, from small businesses to cover the lows given during the emergency? yes these lows are backed by government, 80%, so at the moment no, they do not have to be. —— loans. they made as for security up to arjun £50,000. above that is different. you can understand it because say summary was a loan for £1 million, 80% is cove red was a loan for £1 million, 80% is covered but £200,000 isn't. if you have those, the bank will get worried. this is why there have been calls for britain to follow switzerland and germany, which are their governance are backing loans at 100%. germany started with 80 and moved to 100%. there are calls for this, nothing has happened yet.
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maybe it will change. annie, finally, david bennett in newcastle—under—lyme will ask you to doa newcastle—under—lyme will ask you to do a bit of crystal ball gazing, i are travel insurance rates likely to go are travel insurance rates likely to 9° up are travel insurance rates likely to go up when restrictions are lifted? especially for the higher risk population, like, otheri especially for the higher risk population, like, other i do not wa nt to population, like, other i do not want to get too personal, i am a gym yea rs want to get too personal, i am a gym years including himself. —— i assume he is. if you think of the volcano, the ash cloud, a lot of people thought they were not insured and had to get incorporated to insurance policies because people decided they wa nted policies because people decided they wanted it. i could see that it might do. i don‘t know how it will affect the travel industry. we need a crystal ball for that. are people wanting to go on cruises at long distance after this? it may get a shock to the system. i think we will see a big shake—up in the travel industry, so i would think probably
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insurance as well. an earlier question did ask, is it too late to ta ke question did ask, is it too late to take out insurers now? it would be for coronavirus, you would not be able to get cover for that now. if your holiday was cancelled because of it. but you could take out a policy for your lost baggage or medical, ordinary policy. if you have already booked your holiday and you are looking for insurance, for coronavirus, you‘re not going to get it. that is a lesson to everybody, ta ke it. that is a lesson to everybody, take out your insurance when you book. absolutely. thank you both very much forjoining us, for rope. —— foryour very much forjoining us, for rope. —— for your questions answered.
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the government says it is doing all it can on supplying personal protective equipment to frontline health staff. some hospitals in england have warned that they are down to their last few days‘ worth of gowns used in intensive care. we‘re doing absolutely everything we can to bring as much ppe in, right from across the globe. we recognise it‘s a big challenge. today, the number of people who have died in uk hospitals after contracting coronavirus passed 16,000. there is no date for the reopening of schools in england, but no plans to keep them open over the summer. how one community is coping with lockdown, especially those most vulnerable to the virus. and ringing out from their homes — how some of music‘s biggest names
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have celebrated healthcare workers. good evening. the government says it is doing all it can to get as much personal protective equipment as possible from around the globe to frontline healthworkers here. some hospitals in england have warned that they are down to their last few days of supplies of the gowns used in intensive care. a delivery of some protective equipment that was due to arrive in the uk today from turkey has been delayed. the latest official figures for the uk show there were 596 deaths reported in hospitals in the last 24—hour period. it brings the number of people who have died of covid—19 in uk
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hospitals to 16,060. here‘s our health editor, hugh pym. a vital consignment of masks and other personal protective equipment arrives from china at prestwick airport near glasgow this weekend. it is ready for distribution to health and care workers around scotland, at a time when the kit known as ppe is in short supply in different parts of the uk. some hospitals in england have warned they‘re down to the last few days of supplies of the gowns used in intensive care. a planeload of equipment due in from turkey did not arrive as expected today. shortages of ppe have been reported by frontline staff for several weeks now. i raised the issue at the downing street media briefing. can you comment on reports today that stocks of ppe were allowed to run down in the couple of years before the pandemic, and why was more not
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done to get hold of more ppe in march and early february, including using british companies? it is important to remember that although there may be elements of distribution problems across the uk at different times and in different places, this is a huge pull on services which we have never seen before. and we have managed, actually, despite signalling many potential shortfalls, to continue to supply, potential shortfalls, to continue to supply, going forward. we are doing absolutely everything we can to bring as much ppe in, right from across the globe. we recognise it's across the globe. we recognise it's a big challenge, we recognise we have got to be supporting the people who are supporting our nation in terms of the health service. but labour argues that the government should do more to find supplies in the uk. every mp shooters inbox, certainly mine, is awash with small firms across the country saying they have tried to help the government
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with ppe, they have tried to tell the government they can manufacture a ppe, and they hit a brick wall, they don‘t get anything back from them whatsoever. stephen was a mental health nurse who had worked for the nhs for 30 years. he died with coronavirus last weekend. 0ther members of the family were infected. his daughter made this plea to the public. please stay at home while you can. my dad couldn't, and he lost his life. so, if you can, i know it's horrible, no one wants to be stuck at home 24 hours nearly every day, but it is what we need to do right now, and if it saves one life by staying in the house, then it's absolutely worth it. with social distancing in force and empty streets, speculation and debate about when the lockdown will be eased intensified. there have been reports today that some schools might reopen in the middle of may. the reporting in today‘s newspapers
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today regarding 11th may, that is not true, we have not made that decision. and the other inference in your question, which is that areas in hospitality will be among the last to exit the lockdown, yes, that is true, they will be among the last. and at the new nightingale hospital in london‘s docklands, their first patient to be successfully treated for covid—19 was to another hospital to recover continue his recovery. there was applause from the staff who had volunteered to move to work there. hugh pym, bbc news. in normal times, children would be about to go back to school at the end of the easter holidays, but the latest government briefing from downing street gave no time frame on when that might be possible in england. 0ur education editor, bra nwen jeffreys, reports from staffordshire. the streets in stoke are empty. the schools are closed. but for how much longer? i want nothing more than to see schools back. get them back to normal, make sure that children are sat around learning and experiencing
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the joy of being at school. but i can‘t give you a date. carl ward runs four schools and a college — he can‘t see them opening anytime soon, not least because of staffing. i had about 40—50 members of staff that had self—isolated because they're vulnerable themselves or they've taken government advice and they're looking after vulnerable people. so, i anticipate when i open, that may well be the same. so, i think that's going to be a real difficulty to get over, but it will take some time to go through that process. before schools can even think about reopening, ministers know that parents have to be convinced their children will be safe coming back to school, and teachers confident that they wouldn‘t be risking their lives by coming to work. for parents, it is challenging, with the worry that kids are missing out on learning.
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i think we‘ve got to put the safety of the students and the safety of the teachers and other staff that are working in schools first. i think it would be very difficult to space the children out. children don't space themselves out, they're together, aren't they? yeah. if you select on it and open up the document... co—op schools were getting pupils ready to move online before lockdown. now, they‘re buying 1,000 laptops to help vulnerable families. in england, ministers are now promising more devices and 4g to help. they will be targeted at year ten pupils from poorer families. it‘s a little bit funny, isn‘t it? it‘s the beginning of the summer term, and we aren‘t all in our own schools. a new online school is launching, backed by some big academy schools in england. but this new digital world of learning risks leaving some of the poorest kids falling even further behind. bra nwen jeffreys, bbc news, staffordshire.
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hugh pym joins me now. hugh, what did we learn today in terms of the number of deaths? on the face of it, mishal, the number of deaths at nearly 600 is shocking, but it is quite a lot less than it was just about ten days ago, when it was just about ten days ago, when it was nearly 1000. because there are issues with reporting over weekends, sometimes there is a delayed effect, and you get more over the next few days, that has to be said. and also these are hospital deaths, not including deaths in the community. we get those figures subsequently. soi we get those figures subsequently. so i think not many conclusions can be drawn from that. but let‘s look at the data that was shown at the downing street briefing on the number of patients in hospital with covid—19 in different parts of the uk. we have selected a fuel, not all, to show the trend. in london you can see the patient numbers are falling quite sharply. jenny
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harries, the deputy chief medical 0fficer, harries, the deputy chief medical officer, said that reflected some success , officer, said that reflected some success, that the hospitals have been very much under pressure and had done well there. in the north—west, though, it hasn‘t spiked up north—west, though, it hasn‘t spiked upa bit. north—west, though, it hasn‘t spiked up a bit. scotland and wales, the figures are flat. jenny harries went on to say that in areas where there are challenges like that, that people should continue, particularly observing social distancing, that the challenge is far from over here, and that no firm conclusions should be drawn about any end to this epidemic. on that note, let's turn to our chief political correspondent, vicki young, who joins us from westminster. how are ministers dealing with the question of when these restrictions might be lifted, vicki? i think it was quite telling listening to gavin williamson saying very bluntly, there is no date for when schools might reopen. that is despite a lot of speculation, because people think that opening schools, at least partially, could be one of the first steps, although michael gove said there that restaurants and pubs
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would be one of the later ones. also listening to the phrase, that the uk is being deliberately cautious in its approach, even though other countries are starting to unlock in some places, it sounds like the uk is going to watch that and maybe learn from the experience of others. the next review in the calendar for the lockdown measures is not until seventh may, and of course, businesses and schools will all need proper notice before they can get back to normal, so you really do get the impression that we are quite some time away before we get onto that path. and with such high public compliance with the lockdown measures, people will need to be persuaded that it is safe to go back. vicki young, thank you very much. from tomorrow, businesses can apply for a grant towards paying millions of workers who‘ve been furloughed to prevent mass layoffs. the government will fund 80% of wages up to £2,500 a month for employees, keeping them on the payroll even though they can‘t work. money is expected to reach firms within a week. but businesses say the scheme,
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likely to cost tens of billions of pounds, should go on as long as necessary to prevent future redundances. here‘s our business correspondent katy austin. from major airlines and high—street retailers to tiny local businesses, it‘s estimated two thirds of firms have put at least some staff on furlough, including this temporarily closed cafe in shrewsbury. we just weren‘t sure if we would be coming back to a job, and then when that was announced, it obviously hopefully means that we can all get back to normality as soon as possible. livvy‘s boss owns three cafes in all. we employ 22 people. the chance to claim back his furloughed staff‘s wages from government can‘t come soon enough. we desperately need that money and soon it can come through, because we've been paying out from our own savings, that's taken us into the red, and obviously we need to try and recover that money. thejob retention scheme has been extended by a month until the end ofjune, but business as usual
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is still a long way off. key cutting and shoe repair chain timpson‘s first furlough claim will be for nearly £7 million. predicting low sales when the shutdown ends, its boss thinks tapered support should continue so furlough doesn‘t turn into redundancies in a few months‘ time. i won‘t be opening up every shop on day one. a month after that, maybe it should go down, instead of the government paying 80%, it could be 50% and employers make up the rest, because if we don‘t have this runway of support, i really fear that businesses will lay off people in their millions. thejob retention scheme was announced on 20th march, and tomorrow is the first opportunity for firms to make their wage funding claims online. there will be anger from some who are not eligible to be furloughed, but feel they should be. however, take—up is expected to be huge, with the scheme costing the government tens of billions of pounds in total. 0ne hr expert says firms should only claim taxpayer funds if they can‘t afford any other options. it‘s almost impossible to put
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in all the checks and balances, there aren‘t the resources, it would delay payments and other things, so we have to trust that businesses are doing the right thing. businesses have got to weigh up the financial, legal and ethical considerations. the chancellor has said he will keep reviewing the scheme so it supports the country‘s economic recovery. katy austin, bbc news. it‘s well known the elderly are most vulnerable to the coronavirus. and not all can count on neighbours and relatives to help with their day—to—day lives. michael buchanan has been to holland—on—sea in north—east essex to see how one community is coping. they‘re neighbours and friends. they‘re healthy and active. but they‘re lonely. and they‘re bored. i know i‘m 88, but, i mean, i can getaround. and i‘ve got clubs and little bingos and i go out a lot, so i‘m missing a lot, really.
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pauline greenhalgh hasn‘t ventured beyond her front door in the last three weeks. are you scared for yourself? iam, because, you know, i don‘t feel i can even go to the doctors. i‘ve got this pain in my ear and, i mean, i‘ve had pneumonia twice in a year, so i think i might be a bit vulnerable. the residents on this close, in all 18 houses, are elderly and self—isolating. like other pensioners in the area, many moved here from elsewhere, so, theirfamilies, children, grandchildren, even great grandchildren often live far away. well, i need a lot of help, because i‘m on my own. and i lost my husband, so i‘ve got no one to help me. and i‘ve got family, but they live in london. but i have got some friends around, but then they are in the same position as me. local charity tendring eldercare has become a lifeline to the close, and indeed the wider area. its day centre transformed
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into a food distribution point. this is my office and this is where i've been sleeping for the past couple of weeks. the chairman, 28—year—old edward bell, has taken to sleeping here, even spending his own money to ensure people receive help. very young guy involved in this. what‘s the motivation for you? well, i've always absolutely adored the older generation. i had a lot of elderly great uncles and my grandparents meant the absolute world. and to see clients that we see, it brings it all back to me, because sadly they've all passed, so it's important that we help them, because they can't help themselves. this food parcel, the third the charity has delivered to the close in two days, is for 83—year—old ron kant. his bowls games have been cancelled. he doesn‘t use the internet, so he‘s trying to create his own entertainment. boring. boring, to be honest with you.

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