Hot air & warm words from Neil Parish on those excluded from Covid support measures


Honiton MP: We are trying to help those that fall outside of government schemes

The MP for Honiton has said he is trying to help people who fall out of the Government’s support schemes but it is ultimately up to the chancellor.

Sam Cooper 

Speaking to the Herald, Neil Parish was asked about groups such as Excluded UK who represent individuals and businesses excluded from the Government’s Covid-19 financial support measures.

He said: “We have been supplying their problems into government but the policy comes via the chancellor so I will do my best to represent people’s views and where we can help, we do.

“Some people do fall outside of the schemes and that’s what we have been trying to sort out with a meeting with the treasury minister this week.”

Mr Parish was in Honiton visiting the street market and said he was happy to see businesses begin to reopen so that the life can begin to return to some kind of normal.

He said: “We now need to start opening things because while the government has quite rightly supported businesses by furloughing people, we are borrowing huge sums of money to do it and of course at some stage, this money will have to be paid back.

Mr Parish also encouraged tourists returning to the area to act responsibly. He said: “What I said in parliament last week was we want the tourists to come back but we want them to behave.

“By that I mean, just don’t take too many risks. Please don’t get too drunk so that you don’t know what you’re doing and just take it carefully.

“I think then most people will be happy to have tourists back but we don’t want too many people ignoring the rules. It is a very difficult one but I think on balance I welcome them back but I can see people being concerned.”

Mr Parish, who has been the local MP for a decade now also said the pandemic shows how important health is. He said: “I think this has been the hardest period [of my tenure as MP]. We’ve come through Brexit, one way or the other which every side of the argument you were on, and in a way it shows that our health is so important and something like Covid has laid us completely low but what it has also shown is that the community can come together. I think there are some positive sides and fortunately, Devon has not seen a massive amount of Covid but we just hope there won’t be any spikes.”