Lockdown unrest?

People might struggle to cope with the lockdown

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Are people struggling to follow lockdown rules?

By Joe Harker

Brits are starting to get used to their new normal a week and a half into the lockdown, but putting up with the situation for long might be very difficult.

People have to stay indoors unless they are key to tackling the coronavirus pandemic and cannot work from home, while they are also allowed out to shop for essentials or for exercise once a day.

You can't see friends or family, nor do many of the things you used to enjoy doing. Your country needs you to be patient and responsible.

The Claim:

Unfortunately there are concerns over how long the public will keep faith in the lockdown after a series of government blunders.

If the people who are telling you to stay at home and follow a set of rules are making some rather public mistakes as the British government has over the coronavirus then you might start wondering whether they're wrong about other things too.

Humans are social creatures who are not built for isolation, as time goes by some people will start to look for loopholes in the lockdown and push the boundaries to see what they can get away with.

The former governor of the Bank of England warned that the longer the lockdown goes on for the larger the chance of some form of "rebellion".

Just like policing, imposing a lockdown needs to be done with the consent of the public. The longer the lockdown goes on the more people are going to struggle with the isolation, while the financial pressures of putting the country on hold will start to bite deeper.

As time goes by some people will want or need things to go back to normal so imminently that they might start to lose faith with the government's lockdown.

Lord King suggested that the government needed a clear idea of their lockdown exit strategy, some plan for toning down the restrictions and allowing people to return to a normal life.

It would also help if people could be well informed about what might happen with the lockdown, understanding when it might end and whether tough restrictions could be reimposed after being slackened.

People understand the need for the lockdown now and generally support it but will they be as understanding months down the line or if the government says we need to go back into lockdown?

The Counter Claim:

On the other hand, it might help to know that the social distancing measures appear to be having a positive effect.

The Daily Telegraph reports that coronavirus could now be less contagious than seasonal flu if people keep following the rules.

They cite a new study from the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine which suggests the reproduction rate of Covid-19 has dropped from 2.6 to 0.62.

One of the most dangerous things about coronavirus is how much it spreads among people, as each person infected passes it on to 2.6 people on average, thanks to social distancing that has dropped hugely.

Perhaps people would be less likely to break the lockdown rules if they received more news about the ways their efforts were helping tackle the pandemic. People with little else to do during the lockdown could really do with a way of feeling useful, letting them know how much of an impact they're having could be crucial.

The Facts:

The lockdown is not ending any time soon, so make sure you're ready to be in this for the long haul.

Keeping the reproduction rate of the disease below one means the coronavirus will eventually go on the decline.

Follow the lockdown rules, they are having an impact and you are saving lives by being responsible.

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The Times

Ministeral mis-steps risk testing public faith in the lockdown

When Boris Johnson said at the weekend that things would get worse before they got better, it wasn't clear he meant the government's handling of the crisis.

Perhaps it was inevitable that as the dramatic daily pronouncements of movement restrictions gave way to dull but grim updates of impersonal case numbers, the British (media) would succumb to its tendency to spot a bruise and keep punching it.

First it was why were we not shutting everything down like Italy. So we shut everything down.

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