Responses from AMs

Responses received by 14 April (updated to 15 April 20:49)

This page will be amended if any new responses are received,
Dawn Bowden AM thanks you for the e-mail and has asked me to reply as her Adviser. She has been briefed and the material noted about covid-19.,
Thank you for contacting me recently and for expressing concerns regarding the Senedd’s response to the lock down. Decisions regarding the lock down are made by the First Minister Mark Drakeford and therefore there is no vote on this. I therefore hope that he will be responding to you directly regarding your concerns.
Your sincerely, Llyr Gruffydd AC/AM,

Thank you for your message. With regard to process, there will not be a vote either in the Senedd or in the Westminster Parliament this week as neither of departments are sitting.

It is also the case that any change in lockdown arrangements would in fact be made as an executive decision by the Welsh Government, and would not be subject to a vote, though it may be debated in a virtual meeting of the Senedd as a matter of courtesy.

With regard to the substantive point you make I have to say that I strongly disagree. It is undoubtedly true that the lockdown is causing a great deal of difficulty for many people. It is also the case that it is damaging the economy. But it is my view that as things stand there is no viable choice but for the lockdown to continue to slow the spread of infection. We in Plaid Cymru are pressing the Welsh Government very hard to increase the rate of testing, to ensure proper supply of protective equipment to our medical and care staff, and to ensure that measures are in place to minimise the damage to the economy and we will continue to do so. But until there is a much more effective testing regime in place, and the capacity to trace the contacts of those who test positive continuation of the lockdown is the only option if we are to save lives.
Thank you again for getting in touch. Yours sincerely. Helen Mary Jones AM,
The Welsh Government announced last week that the lockdown would be extended in Wales and the UK Government has since made a similar indication for England.

There is no vote due in the Senedd on 15th April. The Senedd will next meet, virtually, on either the 21st or 22nd of April; as will I understand Parliament.

I have read your open letter and can assure you that I take my scrutiny responsibilities seriously and monitor the main media outlets for emerging evidence on C-19, its probable mortality rate, the possibility of re-infection, its virulence and other relevant factors needed to shape public health policy.
Yours sincerely, David Melding,
Annwyl Syr,
Diolch yn fawr am ysgrifenu ataf.
Yn gywir,
Dr. Dai Lloyd AC
Sent from my iPhone

(Translation: Dear Sir, Many thanks for writing to me. Sincerely,)

(editor’s note: no indication that the letter has been read or considered),
Sent from my iPhone,
Diolch yn fawr. Ni fyddaf yn cymryd rhan yn y cyfarfod llawn nesaf felly wnai anfon eich ebost i’n chwip ni.
Suzy Davies

(My translation:  Many thanks. I will not be taking part in the next full session therefore I’ll send your email at our whip.),
Thank you for your e-mail.

The content of the letter you attached is noted.

It is my understanding that there will not be a (virtual) Plenary meeting of the Senedd/Welsh Parliament this week and that we will not therefore be voting to either increase, extend, relax or remove the lockdown on Wednesday 15 April.

You may instead be referring to the Welsh Government’s Covid group, which meets each Wednesday morning to receive reports of the latest developments from the Chief Medical Officer and the NHS Wales Chief Executive.

Yours sincerely, Mark Isherwood AM/AC
Shadow Minister for Communities, Local Government and North Wales,
Sent from my iPhone


Received 15 April

Hello Simon

Thank you for taking the time to write to me on this.

You raise some valid points and as every Member of the Senedd has been contacted, I’m sure each will consider them carefully.

My group will discuss the contents of your letter, however, we are not part of the cross party Covid committee and the decision making rests firmly with the Welsh Government and they have the numbers to make sure any motion goes through.
Best regards/cofion
Member of the Senedd for the North Wales Region

Diolch – thank you for your email. I am not going to be asked to vote on extending the current restrictions tomorrow. However, if I were to be asked, I would vote to continue as we are for the time being. This is about slowing down the impact of an illness that is proving to have a significant mortality rate if left unchecked.

Yn gywir, Rhun

(editor’s note: no indication that the letter has been read or considered)

Thank you for your sharing your letter.

I have read and am aware of the arguments that some are making that the cure could be worse than the disease. Personally, I believe it was right for countries around the world to respond in a robust way to the threat posed by this particular disease and if anything there are strong arguments that we should have acted earlier and should have achieved the success of places like New Zealand.

It’s good to have a debate and I appreciate your sharing the information.

Cofion gorau

Adam Price

COVID-19 epidemic declining or already over

coronavirus in wales

Professor Wittowski: Covid-19 epidemic is already declining or even already over in many countries

The German-American epidemiology professor Knut Wittkowski argues in a new interview that the Covid19 epidemic is already declining or even already over in many countries.

He explains that the curfews had come too late and had been counterproductive.

“These politicians that just listening to the pundits,  and are totally unaware of the science, are what is causing havoc to the economy and people’s lives.”

“If you compare the epidemic in Sweden and the surrounding Scandinavian countries who did a lockdown, you don’t see any difference at all. Indicating that whatever the countries around Sweden did, it had no effect on the epidemic.”

He also states that getting outside, particularly if it is warm and sunny, is the best way to put an end to the spread of COVID-19. Staying indoors will just prolong the persistence of the disease.

Risk of COVID-19 death for under 65 year olds

Greater chance of dying commuting than of COVID-19 for under 65’s

risk of dying from covid-19Professor John Ioannidis of Stanford university has competed a study looking at the risk of dying from COVID-19 infection of people under the age of 65.
His analysis has shown that this demographic has less of a chance of dying from COVID-19 than dying from a fatal accident while commuting to work.

This degree of risk (or lack of it) applies even to areas of high infection and numbers of COVID-19 related deaths, sometimes referred to as global hotspots.

“CONCLUSIONS: People <65 years old have very small risks of COVID-19 death even in the hotbeds of the pandemic and deaths for people <65 years without underlying predisposing conditions are remarkably uncommon. Strategies focusing specifically on protecting high-risk elderly individuals should be considered in managing the pandemic.”

To review the analysis in greater detail, see: Population-level COVID-19 mortality risk for non-elderly individuals


Ian R. Crane Alternative View

Ian R. Crane long standing campaigner against fracking in the UK, has been in critical condition in hospital suffering from cancer. His fate depends on success or failure of an operation this weekend. He states his odds are not good.

Last year Ian eangaged in a speaking tour educating people about the dangers of 5G technology being introduced without any safety checks. I went to one of his talks in St Dogmaels (near Cardigan) in the autumn. The hall was packed.

From his hospial bed, Ian gave a short talk. Extracts from the talk are pasted below:

What I see is very different from what is being portrayed. I have the ward to myself. So they are not inundated. And of course the other factor seems to be that any death is now going to be recorded as covid related, regardless. And that’s an attempt to maintain the charade of the numbers of deaths.

Nobody should mourn me. That’s why I’ve kept it [my illness] as quiet as possible for as long as possible because my story isn’t the big picture. It’s important that communities look at the bigger picture. And it’s really important that communities find a way to come together because that’s what is going on right now – an attempt to break up communities. The other side of it is perhaps giving families an opportunity to come back together. But many of those families are going to struggle financially. And I think they are going to take it to the point where something like universal credit will be on offer provided you follow the protocols. You know what that means.

It really is time. We’ve been making the call now for two decades now. The community activism, particularly against fracking, was incredibly successful. I suspect a big part of this is to try and break up the local community activism and take literally full control of people’s lives.

I think we know how this is going to play out. I think what is important is that communities come together and decide just how they want to respond. All we can do now is encourage people to take a step back, because now they have the time to do so, and look at everything that is occurring.

To listen to the full 15 minute talk click here.