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The government have given the go ahead for families to mix at Christmas. What will you do?
Just because something is allowed doesn’t mean it’s a good idea. Large numbers of people of all ages stuck together in small rooms for long alcohol-lubricated periods of time in the middle of winter sounds like a perfect arrangement for spreading a virus. If that is our Christmas 2020, you don’t need the help of the ‘ghost of Christmas future’ to imagine how Christmas 2021 might be for some.
Nor do you need to be a media specialist to predict that at some point next January there will be a story in the press, probably more than one, about an older person seriously ill or worse with Covid-19 and the young family member who feels terrible because they think they infected them over Christmas.
It may be harsh to say these things but do you truly believe they won’t happen?
Why then have government given ‘permission’ for a three family, five day Christmas? Because they think that people will get together anyway so they want to give some guidance? Fear of the wrath of the Tory backbencher? Reverse psychology? Give us permission and we'll consider it; ban it and we'll suddenly all want to do it.
Who knows? It’s certainly fair to say that they haven’t ‘followed the science’. One member of the government’s Scientific Advisory Group for Emergencies (Sage) has already called the plans a ‘recipe for regret for many families’ Other scientists have pointed out that the virus doesn’t know it’s Christmas and with good vaccine-related news on the horizon, it might be better to wait.
Of course, the government wants to give us good news now. But other religious festivals have been cancelled. If the government really want to help, perhaps they should suggest we all delay our celebrations by six months and announce that 25th and 26th June 2021 will be bank holidays. That would be both popular and safe.
It’s tough for men to ask for help but if you don’t ask when you need it, things generally only get worse. Especially during a major pandemic like Covid-19. So we’re asking.
Men appear more likely to get Covid-19 and far, far more likely to die from it. The Men's Health Forum are working hard pushing for more action on this from government, from health professionals and from all of us. Why are men more affected and what can we do about it? We need the data. We need the research. We need the action. Currently we're the only UK charity doing this - please help us.
Here’s our fund-raising page - please chip in if you can.