By May 2020, there had been over 12,000 deaths in UK care homes involving COVID-19. Public service workers went to work every day to try to stop the number of deaths from soaring.
People stayed at home, and away from their loved ones, to protect them. We had been subject to severe restrictions to our daily lives for almost two months, but it already felt like a lifetime.
It was almost unimaginable, that two years later, we would still be battling this pandemic.
It’s now clear that the work of all our public service workers, and the efforts of everyone else who followed the rules, has been taken for granted by the people in power.
And that is being generous.
While they were enjoying themselves, UNISON members were hard at work trying to save lives. It just doesn’t get more sickening than this – until you find out that those at the top are also prepared to repeatedly hide the truth from us all.
Now, over 175,000 people have lost their lives. Their families and friends are left heartbroken, public service workers are exhausted and, just yesterday, inflation hit 5.1% – a 10-year high that will squeeze the living standards of hard-working people.
The Bank of England has forecast that this will rise to 6% by spring, with the inevitable consequence of pushing people to borrow more money in overdrafts, credit cards and payday loans, just to get by each day.
The pressures and demands that have been piled on everyone up and down the country have been relentless. I doubt that Prime Minister Boris Johnson could ever understand how everyone else has coped with this.
However, now that the truth is out about No10 partying while the country was in crisis, and now that his backbenchers are beginning to put pressure on him, perhaps he will have just a tiny taste of the strains we have all been tolerating.
He may try and move the attention away and on to his ‘living with COVID’ plan, or he may say ‘sorry’. But any apology he may choose to give will be too late, offer no comfort and will never erase the memories of the damage caused to people’s lives since he took up office as prime minister.