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Claire Stinger, Editor

England’s Prime Minister, Boris Johnson, issued an order to return to lockdown that came into effect on Tuesday, January 5, 2021. This was the third lockdown in an attempt to keep the numbers of COVID-19 cases from overwhelming hospitals as a new strand of COVID-19, seemingly more contagious, spread through the U.K. This lockdown will last six weeks and calls for everyone to stay home and only leave when necessary. Necessity includes escaping domestic violence, exercising, work, seeking medical attention, COVID-19 testing, and grocery shopping, according to the Prime Minister. In mid-February, the government will begin to reevaluate the circumstances and decide how to further approach the situation.

Also during February, the COVID-19 vaccine will begin to be distributed on a priority basis to the elderly and other high-risk citizens. Other people considered high-risk, or top priority, are caretakers for the elderly, health care workers, and social workers. Originally the main priority was to distribute it to those working with the elderly; however, now it is becoming a priority to make it available to those working in all critical positions.

  A six-week lockdown calls for students to stay home from school and take part in alternative learning. This has caused stress on many college students and some future students who worry for the unknown. “ We don’t know what’s happening with college, so that’s another worry,” seventeen-year-old Blakesly expressed in an interview with The Guardian. However, there is one exception to this rule: those training to be critical workers during this pandemic or in general. This includes but is not limited to medical students and those studying veterinary science. 

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While the Prime Minister believes this is what is best, it will impact the lives of the people all around England. One main concern is childcare, which many are struggling to find. They have to request time off of work to stay home with their children, which could ultimately lead to them losing their job. Another concern about the lockdown is not business or job-related. I wish we didn’t have to go through this again. I’m concerned about people’s mental health” Blakesly said.

The ongoing pandemic has caused fear and discomfort in the lives of many. While the situation might not be ideal, the U.K. is doing their part to lessen the spread of COVID-19.