Commenting after a call between the Prime Minister and opposition party leaders, acting Leader of the Liberal Democrats Ed Davey said:
“As millions of people in Greater Manchester, East Lancashire and West Yorkshire are facing a tightening up of restrictions there is a real concern for what this will mean for jobs and businesses.
“If Boris Johnson thinks that he can make these huge changes to people’s lives and it will not hurt local businesses, like shops and restaurants, he is in utter denial.
“These restrictions are a sign that the crisis is not behind us, the economy is still very vulnerable and furlough must remain open to businesses that need it in areas with either new stricter restrictions or with local lockdown.
“If they do not tens of thousands of jobs saved in spring will be lost in summer.”