Kate Garraway and her children thank NHS with clap for carers
Clap for carers will make a comeback at 8pm tonight as the nation is expected to applaud frontline NHS workers, care employees and all those affected by the ongoing pandemic. Clap for heroes acknowledges teachers, homeschooling parents, those who are shielding and “every other person who is having a difficult time”. Annemarie Plas, who started the clapping back in March last year, said the comeback aims to “lift spirits” in England amid its third national lockdown.
Ms Plas tweeted earlier this week: “We are bringing back the 8pm applause, in our 3rd national lockdown I hope it can lift the spirit, of all of us.
“Carers, teachers, homeschooling parents, those who shield and ALL who is pushing through this difficult time! Please join & share.”
Applause swarmed the nation for ten weeks straight during the first wave of the pandemic.
The weekly event came to an end on May 28 after Ms Plas said it had become too heavily politicised by people.
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Ms Plas has since distanced herself from tonight’s event after receiving abuse and threats from a “hateful few on social media channels”.
In a statement, she said: “Irrespective of their views and reasons for believing this is an acceptable way to behave, I did not set out to make a political statement and will not put my loved ones at risk.
“I have no political agenda, I am not employed by the Government, I do not work in PR, I am just an average mum at home trying to cope with the lockdown situation.
“As a consequence I have opted to distance myself from tonight’s planned applause and I will no longer seek to raise further awareness of it.”
She added: “I do acknowledge the frustrations and anger felt by some.
“However, vilifying me personally or attempting to destroy the goodwill and positive intentions of the national applause and the millions of people who want to take a few moments on a Thursday evening to think about and acknowledge their pandemic ‘heroes’, is simply destructive and counter intuitive.”
Ms Plas’s statement comes after a number of people spoke out about the clap comeback on social media.
A number of people noted that while it was a nice thing to do to acknowledge workers during the pandemic, it doesn’t take away from the fact NHS staff and carers are some of the least-well-paid employees in the country.
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Some critics also argue that clapping for the NHS and pandemic workers takes some of the spotlight away from the Government, who should be scrutinised for the situation facing frontline staff.
Before Ms Plas’s statement on Thursday, celebrities and other public figures had been reluctant to publicly support the campaign.
Some said “its time has passed” while medics posted messaged and photos urging people “please don’t clap for us. Just wear a mask, wash your hands and respect lockdown”.
Ms Plas did, however, stress the clap on Thursday had not been cancelled, adding: “I don’t have that authority
How long do you have to clap?
Speaking about the initiative, Ms Plas said: “Coming together to show our support for the NHS is more important now than it’s ever been.
“The NHS is under immense pressure to help the nation fight this virus and celebrating our front-line health workers’ efforts is something every one of us can do to show we are behind them every step of the way. “
As it stands, there isn’t a certain time limit on how long you should clap for.
And if you want to get involved, go outside your front door and clap for however long you deem it necessary to do so.
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