On Wednesday 14 October, the Conservatives, including the Conservative MP for Derbyshire Dales, voted against a motion brought by the Labour Party, to move the government’s failing track and trace system – currently run by private company Serco – under local authority control.

The Conservatives continued use of Serco, is putting cronyism before public health. Secro’s Chief Executive is the brother of former Conservative MP, Nicholas Soames. His partner Camilla Soames, is a Conservative Party donor and the company’s former top spin doctor is the Conservative Minister for Health, Edward Argar.

The government also spent more public money to try to patch up the failing system, bringing in private consultants between April and August, who they paid £7,000 a day, rather than using NHS staff.

Coronavirus cases are rising in every part of our County, and the Derbyshire County Council Public health director has said, it is “a matter of when, rather than if” other areas of Derbyshire are plunged into tier two lockdown.

The Conservative government must not waste any more time, or money, and urgently stop pumping funds into Serco, who have failed to provide us with a proper test and trace system. Instead they must switch funds to local councils, and let our local authorities and NHS teams contact trace.

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