A council leader has given the people in his COVID-infected district an ultimatum.
Comply with the current lockdown restrictions or face a Christmas under strict restrictions.
Swale’s most up to date infection rates show 584 people per 100,000 people have contracted the deadly virus.
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It makes it the second most infected area in Kent, just behind Thanet.
Cases have been rising week on week since the autumn, with Andrew Scott-Clark, the director of public health at Kent County Council, saying the increasing figures were a “cause for concern” back in October.
And now it appears the community will have to come together to disrupt the spread of the virus, or pay the consequences next month.
Cllr Truelove fears the borough will be placed in a high tier once the national lockdown comes to an end on December 2.
‘We risk spending Christmas in lockdown’
Cllr Truelove said: “Unless we can level off the rate of growth in Covid infections in the borough, we risk a longer period of high-level restrictions beyond December 2.
“Infection rates have reached 584 per 100,000 people, and if we don’t do something to contain it we risk spending Christmas in lockdown.
“Before the Prime Minister introduced the new nationwide restrictions earlier this month, we were being pressed by the government and Kent County Council to go into Tier 2 – the High-Risk status – and we risk being placed in this tier when nation lockdown ends if cases continue to rise.”
Its feared that if infection rates are not brought under control that some people will be spending Christmas alone.
It could also restrict people going to see relatives in care homes.
And now Swale Borough Council is urging complete compliance in a bid to save Christmas for scores of residents.
‘We can only tackle the issue through compliance’
Cllr Truelove added: “Swale now has the second highest rate of infection in Kent with increasing numbers in care homes and a higher rate of infection amongst 65+ age group than in many parts of the county.
“The virus spreads virulently through close personal contact and we can only tackle the issue if we comply with government guidelines.
“It’s our duty as a council to encourage and urge people to comply with the restrictions in place and to closely monitor the business community to ensure people’s safety.
“I urge councillors to spread a message of compliance and to discourage anybody who wishes to glory in their non-compliance.”