Young children exempt from two-person lockdown rule

Young children will be exempt from the two-person lockdown rule to prevent parents from becoming isolated.

From Thursday people can only meet with one other person outside who is not in their household.

The restriction initially counted all children under school age as one person.  

But this has been changed after concerns were raised a parent and baby would not be able to meet up with another friend and young child. 

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Conservative MP Alicia Kearns and Labour MP Stella Creasy had both called for the rules to be relaxed.

Their pleas were heard today when health minister Nadine Dorries said young children would not be included as a single person. 

She tweeted: ‘Children under school age who are with their parents will not count towards the limit on two people meeting outside. 

‘This will mean that a parent can see a friend or family member with their baby or young children.

‘Children and adults who are dependent on round-the-clock care, such as those with severe disabilities, will also be included. 

‘The guidance will be updated to reflect this.’

Boris Johnson announced the UK could possibly have a vaccine early next year as he laid out the new restrictions that will begin on Thursday and last until at least 2 December. 

All non-essential shops, pubs restaurants, and gyms will be forced to close.

Schools, nurseries, universities and essential shops, such as supermarkets and pharmacies, will be permitted to stay open.

The prime minister revealed on Saturday millions of tests which could make a diagnosis within 15 minutes would soon be available. 

He announced there would be a ‘steady but massive expansion’ of the kits beginning in the next few days and this would be aided by the armed forces. 

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