Should children be included in the rule of six? Sheffield people have their say

People across England can now only meet in groups of up to six, including children of all ages.

Tuesday, 15th September 2020, 3:20 pm

In Wales and Scotland, however, where there are similar rules around social gatherings, things are slightly different. In Wales children under 11 do not count towards the overall number of six, and in Scotland those under 12 are exempt from the rule.

We asked The Star, Sheffield, readers if they believed children should also be exempt in England.

Here’s what some of them said on Facebook:

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People of all ages, including children, are currently included in the rule of six in England.

Janet Myers simply said: “Yes, I agree, it should not include children.”

In reply, Faye Harris said: “What I don’t get is my parents can visit us if two of my kids are out but not if all kids in, yet what difference does it make? We all live in the same household so if one gets symptoms were all likely to catch it or at least be carrying it.”

Craig Bolton posed a question. He said: “It’s all rubbish. Are you saying a group of five is different to a group of seven? The whole thing is farcical.”

Joanne Harding said the new rule made things difficult for her family.

She said: “We're a family of five. I'm a carer for my mum and dad but now we can't all call down together. I’m also close to my brother, who has a new daughter. It’s the same, we can't all visit anymore... Crazy. Kids should be exempt at least under 5s.”

Rachel Stock said it seemed like a step backwards after the Eat Out to Help Out scheme which ran throughout August.

"As a restaurant owner it’s like a kick in the teeth after the scheme. Unbelievable.”

Amanda Whiteley, however, thought that children should be included in the rule. On the question of whether or not children should be exempt, she said: “No. Schools have serious issue right now. It would be stupid.”

Comments also came in from readers via Twitter.

@TeachSUFC said: “Maybe the government should just come up with guidelines and laws that actually work. I lived in Italy at the start of the pandemic. They issued simple and effective guidelines and went into lockdown. So far we’ve issued 100 contradicting orders that no one can keep track of."

Andy Pugsley (@Andypeep) said: “What people forget; our children are carriers of this horrible disease so it’s not unfair to exempt them, it’s for their safety as well as ours.”

Julie Larkin (@JulieLarkin) also agreed that children should not be exempt from the rule.

She said: “Absolutely not. Look how it’s taking off in schools. The rules are strict for a reason.”

Jason Waindog (@jwain88), however, holds a very different view.

He said: “Any healthy person should be exempt. Can't put our lives on hold for the minority. Keep the vulnerable and elderly indoors and there would be no problems. Thee economy is dying and austerity looming, jobs being lost and cut. Our country is ruined if we carry on like this.”