Priti Patel just announced a new £800 penalty for people going to house parties of more than 15 people in homes and we have some thoughts...
The government just announced a new £800 penalty for people going to house parties of more than 15 people in homes and we have some thoughts...
This move also comes less than a month after Christmas, whenfor the celebrations. In that context, it’s fair to say the line between a government-sanctioned house party and an illegal one is not entirely clear.Why £800?Throughout the pandemic, many have expressed exasperation at how differently people have experienced it depending on their financial situation. Whether it’s
influencers jetting to Dubaior more deprived areas facing longer and more intense lockdowns, the impact of coronavirus policies haven’t been felt equally by everyone.The government’s new house party policy follows in the same tradition. It might be a lot of money for most of us but if an £800 fine is the only punishment for attending a party, the policy starts to look more like a tax on the poor than an effective public health measure. Those who can afford to pay the fines have nothing to fear from repeat offences, while people with less -
who generally have worse access to outdoor space for Covid-safe socialising- bear the brunt of a heavy-handed approach.“It might be a lot of money for most of us but if an £800 fine is the only punishment for attending a party, the policy starts to look more like a tax on the poor than an effective public health measure” headtopics.com
Why 15 people?Did Priti Patel know when she announced this policy that she might be definitively settling an age-old debate about the line between a gathering and a party? A 15th attendee, it transpires, makes all the difference.More seriously though, the messaging on numbers of party-goers is confusing from a public health perspective and even potentially creates a legal loophole for smaller get-togethers. As
, is it now perfectly legitimate to have a party of 14 people?What’s up with that font?This is perhaps the biggest question of them all, and sadly it’s one we can’t answer. We don’t know why the home secretary tweeted the words “house parties” in a copy-and-pasted font reminiscent of MSN Messenger usernames circa-2006 - especially when it’s one that can’t be read by screen readers, breaking the
government’s own guidelines on accessible communications.So, what exactly is the point of this policy?House parties have been something of a flashpoint since the first national lockdown in March 2020, with such scenarios - alongside issues such as buying takeaway coffee, travelling for daily exercise and sitting on park benches - receiving what seems like disproportionate attention in the face of
and evidence about workplaces and financial insecurity. Read more: Stylist Magazine »
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