Latest Clap for Carers may be finale as organiser says it should end at its peak
Some health staff have complained some of those taking part then go on to flout the lockdown rules.
The 10th weekly Clap for Carers event may be the last, after the woman behind the idea said she will no longer take part.
Millions of people across the UK have lined their thresholds, gathered – while socially distancing – on pavements, and stood in their gardens at 8pm every Thursday to demonstrate their support for care staff and frontline workers.
But the ritual has been criticised by some for becoming “politicised”, while others, including NHS staff, have said some people who take part in the clap then wilfully ignore the plea to stay at home and avoid gatherings in an effort to ease the strain on the healthcare system.
Annemarie Plas, 36, last week told the PA news agency she has no problem with people continuing to gather at 8pm each week to clap, but said she will not be among those taking part in future.
She said: “To have the most impact I think it is good to stop it at its peak.
“Without getting too political, I share some of the opinions that some people have about it becoming politicised.
“I think the narrative is starting to change and I don’t want the clap to be negative.”
Ms Plas, from Streatham in south London, told ITV’s Good Morning Britain she will clap on Thursday evening, and will return outside at the same time next week to “check in” with her community, without applauding.
“For me, next Thursday I will go out to see who is out there and check in with my community – we are still in this crisis, but I think there are other initiatives we can support which show our gratitude.”
NHS doctor Meenal Viz said on Twitter: “As a doctor, I’ve appreciated your support during #ClapForCarers.
“But instead of clapping tonight at 8pm, I’ll observe silence in remembrance of my 237 colleagues who have died during the pandemic.”
She is backing a crowdfunding campaign to challenge the Government over personal protective equipment for NHS staff.
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