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Good morning. We are used to regular, far-reaching coronavirus announcements from Boris Johnson – less than two weeks ago it was the rule of six and the moonshot – but today’s is qualitatively different because, for the first time since March, he is going to be announcing a package of measures that effectively tighten regulations at a national level, not loosen them.
That said, the PM is not going as far as some of his advisers or ministers wanted. But it’s still going to be a hard statement to make for someone who seems psychologically averse to delivering bad news. Here is our preview.
This morning Michael Gove, the Cabinet Office minister, has announced another element of the package. In July Johnson started telling people to go to work if they could, but now that advice has been abandoned. Gove told BBC Breakfast.
If people can work from home, they should. But I stress that it’s very important that those people whose jobs require them to be in a specific workplace do so.
He said the same thing on the Today programme. Asked there if this was a change, he replied: “Yes.” More people were now being encouraged to work from home, he said.
Here is the agenda for the day.
8.30am: Boris Johnson chairs cabinet. Then he will chair a Cobra meeting.
9am: Sir Keir Starmer delivers his speech to Labour’s online conference.
9.30am: The ONS publishes its weekly death figures for England and Wales.
9.30am: Sir Ian Diamond, the national statistician and head of the ONS, gives evidence to the Commons public administration committee on coronavirus.
12.30pm: Johnson gives a statement to MPs about coronavirus.
After 2pm: Nicola Sturgeon is due to give a statement to MSPs about coronavirus.
8pm: Johnson delivers a TV address to the nation on coronavirus.
Politics Live has been doubling up as the UK coronavirus live blog for some time and, given the way the Covid crisis eclipses everything, this will continue for the foreseeable future. But we will be covering non-Covid political stories too, like the Starmer spech, and where they seem more important and interesting, they will take precedence.
Here is our global coronavirus live blog.
I try to monitor the comments below the line (BTL) but it is impossible to read them all. If you have a direct question, do include “Andrew” in it somewhere and I’m more likely to find it. I do try to answer questions, and if they are of general interest, I will post the question and reply above the line (ATL), although I can’t promise to do this for everyone.
If you want to attract my attention quickly, it is probably better to use Twitter. I’m on @AndrewSparrow.
Source: The Guardian
Keyword: UK coronavirus live: PM abandons ‘go to work if you can’ advice ahead of of major announcement to MPs | Politics