Shropshire Star comment: Now time for the young to do their bit and get vaccine

We have only to look at our friends overseas to see how perilous a position we might be in. As the UK starts to unlock, with different time frames and methods across the four nations, we are in a fortunate position.

The vaccine rollout is continuing.
The vaccine rollout is continuing.

The vaccination campaign has been a tremendous success and we are seeing the simultaneous fall in infection rate as social mobility increases. This is the moment that everyone has been waiting for during the past 14 months.

Elsewhere, people are not so fortunate. The chronic situation in India, a nation with the closest ties to our region, is a salutary reminder of how things could instead be. We must be grateful for the brilliance of scientists, the focus of politicians, the determination of our NHS and the willingness of foot soldiers who deliver the vaccine on the ground.

Now is not the time for complacency, however. We are not yet out of the woods and there will be more twists and turns before the pandemic is through. We must take advantage of propitious conditions now by getting ahead of the curve and making sure we prevent a further wave.

It is incumbent upon us all to maintain social distancing while that still has the desired effect. We must also make best use of immunisations as those roll out among the younger population. Elderly adults have shown tremendous commitment in responding to the call, which has led to a dramatic fall in hospitalisations, deaths and also transmission. Now it is the turn for younger adults to show the same level of determination.

Despite warnings about supply issues, the rollout has continued and it provides a beacon of hope after a dark 12 months. In the background, there are questions over who said what in Downing Street and the recriminations are beginning. In many ways, after the toughest of years, this was always likely. Boris will, no doubt, have plenty more questions to answer.

Yet for most, the vaccine is the big story. Get your jab when offered and do your bit to help this country along the road to recovery.

It is imperative that everyone steps up to the plate.

The on-off uncertainty over foreign holidays continues. Figures suggest there is an appetite to get away to some guaranteed sunshine but we still seem to be some way off yet. While the push for clarification is understandable, the ever-changing situation with Covid suggests the uncertainty will be with us for a while yet.

Holiday companies have been hard hit by the pandemic and it is unrealistic to expect an upswing in fortunes soon. Other nations around the world, including highly developed European nations, are simply not safe to visit. The responsible thing to do is be patient and wait, rather than risk undermining the work that has taken us to this place.

There may be opportunities for people to visit holiday destinations later this year: Devon in July and August is pleasant, but for autumn sun people have to look further afield. In the short-term, the uncertainty and risk remains and so we might have to wait a little longer for the dream holiday. That, however, is a price worth paying as the nation continues its recovery. In the not-distant future, liberties will be restored.

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