Greater Manchester leaders call for exit strategy to lift Covid-19 restrictions

Leaders across Greater Manchester are calling for an exit strategy to be implemented in the region to ease coronavirus lockdown restrictions as soon as possible.

The Mayor of Greater Manchester Andy Burnham has written to the Health Secretary offering to work with the Government on an agreed programme for highly-targeted test and tracing interventions in communities most affected.

Leaders are concerned current restrictions are causing confusion and are calling for a replacement of the current phase to introduce hyper-local door-to-door interventions in all 10 boroughs.

It comes as lockdown restrictions in Burnley, Hyndburn, Stockport, Bolton and Trafford were lifted today, (September 2) despite pleas from local council leaders to delay the easing of rules.

The leader of Bolton Council urged the government to delay the easing of lockdown rules

The letter also asks that further consideration is given to the financial support provided to those who are self-isolating as well as requesting the removal of all restrictions on businesses opening across Greater Manchester so that there is a level playing field for the beauty and leisure industries.

A spokesperson for the GMCA, said: “It is clear that more targeted, hyper-local door-to-door action is more effective than broad geographical restrictions. That is why the Mayor and Leaders want to agree an exit strategy with the Government for the current restrictions. However, before that it is place, it is accepted that the restrictions will need to continue in eight boroughs in the short term.

“As soon as practically and safely possible, we want to see the whole of Greater Manchester coming back into line with the rest of country but with funding to provide enhanced local interventions where they are needed.”

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