Email regarding Dominic Cummings

A very substantial number of constituents have contacted me over the past few days to ask my views on Dominic Cummings. I tried my best to respond to all who emailed over the weekend, and I shall be responding to all received since yesterday afternoon with the following email.

This is an email I wrote myself. I neither used, nor was provided with, a template text to use on this issue.

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Thank you for contacting me about Mr Cummings’ behaviour.

I listened to his explanation of his actions. Whilst one might have some sympathy with his motives and his concern for his family, I am angry that so many have sacrificed so much for public safety and yet this man has decided his interpretation of “doing the right thing“ overrode the clear instruction of Stay at Home. It is clear to me that Mr Cummings has broken some of the guidelines which we all were instructed to follow.

I am concerned that his actions have undermined our, and my, efforts to keep Wimbledon safe. My concern moving forward is the distraction this is causing at a time of national crisis and the way it is undermining confidence in the public health message. Public adherence to the rules is achieved by consent in this country and that is made much harder if people feel it is one rule for them and another for senior Government advisors.

I am disappointed he chose not to apologise however Mr Cummings conceded that many reasonable people will not agree with his actions. I share much of the confusion and anger that so many constituents have expressed. I would have not made the decisions that he did.  I have not seen my elderly parents since the beginning of March.

I have always tried to do the best thing for Wimbledon and whilst I think it would be served by Mr Cummings leaving his role, I accept that is the Prime Minister’s decision who he employs as a Special Adviser.  I have made my concerns and the anger of my constituents very clear to the Whips and colleagues in the Cabinet and asked that they pass them to the Prime Minister.

All best. Stay safe.

 

Stephen Hammond