Interview with Member of Parliament for Watford - Dean Russell

Member of Parliament for Watford - Dean Russell

Joining Vibe107.6 live on Thursday morning’s Breakfast Show was Member of Parliament for Watford, Dean Russell

Joining Vibe107.6 live on Thursday morning’s Breakfast Show was Member of Parliament for Watford, Dean Russell.

Speaking to Vibe presenter Miles Blumsom, the MP explained the journey out of lockdown, the importance of following guidelines, the NHS, parliament and VE Day.

As Prime Minister Boris Johnson addresses the nation on Sunday regarding the future of Great Britain whilst living through the COVID-19 pandemic, Mr Russell said:

“We won’t just be going out of lockdown overnight. I can’t see it being suddenly that everyone goes back to normality. The reason why, is that we don’t want to have a second spike. That’s my biggest concern. We have to make sure that we follow advice.

“I am very conscious of making sure that we get the economy healthy again. I am concerned for businesses. My gut feeling is that it will be more complex coming out of it than it was going in.

“There will be a series of measures. Going back to pre-COVID-19 life as normal will not be the case.”

Explaining the latest situation regarding personal protective equipment (PPE), the MP said:

“The reality from a Government perspective with PPE is that we have to follow strict guidelines.

“It is absolutely critical that we have the right equipment medically for our incredible NHS staff and carers.

“The good news for Hertfordshire and Watford is that we have around 110 different sources from local and foreign suppliers. I feel confident for Hertfordshire.

“The reality of modern life is that we have to tackle and fight for procuring PPE from around the world.”

Following the news that Professor Neil Ferguson (a leading lockdown professional) had broken lockdown rules, the Member of Parliament of Watford urged people to do the right thing.

“To everyone following the rules – thank you,” he said.

“It’s hard and very tough on everyone. The vast majority of people are following rules and doing the right thing. Flouting the rules isn’t right. The purpose of lockdown is to save lives and protect the NHS.

“We are trying to stop people from passing on COVID, going into hospital and overworking our NHS staff. It’s important to be at home and follow the lockdown.

“I would urge everyone to follow guidelines. The truth of this is whatever happens in the next few months, the virus will act like it already has done. We can’t allow coronavirus to win the war.”

Working from home, as with most who have jobs, has now become the norm. Missing his visits to Parliament, Russell explained:

“I love being in Parliament. It’s tough not being in this amazing building and part of the parliamentary process. I love that to an extent, you can take part it any debate.

“The process in place at the moment has been smooth. I’ve been very fortunate and privileged to ask the questions on a lot of people’s minds and get a precise answer back from the people in the know.

“I feel from my part I’m a workaholic. I get quick responses from ministers. For the people in Watford, I hope that we are getting more visibility than perhaps other constituencies. There’s a joke in Parliament where my colleagues just call me ‘Watford’.”

Reminding listeners that if ill, one should seek medical assistance, the MP said:

“Remember if you need to use the hospital, you’re ill or need to see the GP, then please make sure you go in or make an appointment. A side effect of the virus is that people are putting off illness because they are worried about seeking treatment.

“If you need to call an ambulance or go to A and E then you should do so. We don’t want to get through the spike of COVID cases and have another spike, of injuries that could have been dealt with earlier.

“Pretty much everything is running as normal within hospitals and within GP surgeries. On the whole, please seek medical attention if you need it. The hospitals can deal with both COVID patients and other patients.”

Celebrating 75 years since VE DAY, tomorrow Watford will virtually rejoice. Mr Russell explained the significance of such an occasion.

“It’s an incredible celebration and reminder of those who fought and lost their lives,” he said.

“We still feel the reverberations of those sacrifices paid. The Council are holding a virtual service. There are virtual celebrations going on.

“I can’t say how appreciative I am of those who do celebrate and remember the achievements of those who fought for us. The world literally wouldn’t be the same if it weren’t for them.

“We remember them and remember the situation the world was in so that we never fall back into it. It’s such an important day and it’s a day of celebration, where hopefully, we come together and say our thanks.”

Everyone at Vibe107.6 would also like to wish Dean a very happy birthday for tomorrow!


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