Newport Covid spike caused by people not following ‘basic’ rules
Emily Gill, local democracy reporter
The leader of Newport council has said people have become “a little bit more relaxed” and some people are “not following the simple and basic rules of social distancing” after the city reported a spike in cases.
Between April 25 and May 1, Newport reported 40 cases of coronavirus, which is the second highest of the 22 local authority areas in Wales. Only Cardiff reported more cases, with 47.
Speaking in Newport City Council’s cabinet meeting, the leader of the council Cllr Jane Mudd, said: “We’ve seen a number of cases in certain areas here in Newport, which are emerging not because of any breakdown in any system, but because people have become a little bit more relaxed, and what is happening is that in some cases people are not adhering to all important social distancing rules.
“And it’s really important if people do find they’ve been asked to isolate they must follow that guidance and isolate.
“However, we are seeing an increase in the number of cases of covid within Newport because people are not following the simple and basic rules of social distancing and self-isolating when requested to do so.
“It’s absolutely important to be able to continue in the direction we are continuing, enabling businesses to reopen and people to go about their normal lives.”
Cllr Mudd said people shouldn’t be financially disadvantaged for self-isolating because “there is support there to help people with this”.
The council leader also highlighted her own ward – Malpas – as an area that had seen a rise in Covid cases.
Data from Public Health Wales shows that there were seven cases reported in Malpas between April 25 to May 1. Only the neighbouring ward of Bettws had more cases (8).
The figures show that Malpas has a case rate of 89.3 cases per 100,000 people and Bettws has 99.5 cases per 100,000 people.
The city of Newport has a case rate of 25.9 per 100,000 people in the same period, which is the highest of all 22 local authorities in Wales.
Cllr Mudd said: “Please remain vigilant in keeping to social distancing and I say that particularly in relation to some areas in the north of Newport, my own area as well.
“So, to people in my own community and the people in the neighbouring communities, please remain vigilant and if you do have symptoms, please get a test.”