Living in Lockdown: Key findings from Week 7
This week we explore whether the lifting of restrictions is matched by a lifting of spirits. As many of us embrace the world of ‘non-essential shopping’ and prepare to queue around the block for trainers and clothes rather than loo rolls and pasta, we ask our Community Perspectives panel of 16-25 year olds how they feel about changing societal norms and the impact of re-joining society.
Compared to our global neighbours, the UK have been pretty slow to embrace masks. So, now that they are essential on public transport and increasingly expected attire in places where social distancing is difficult, how do our panel really feel about wearing them and do they think have a place in education or the workplace?
When asked their thoughts, over two thirds reacted positively to them as a way of preventing the spread of the coronavirus.
“Fine as they will help stop the spread.”
“Feel like it’s the right step in the right direction.”
Many of our panel also felt that masks will become part of the new normality as we start to re-integrate with society post lockdown:
“They feel a bit weird to wear as it's not something I've ever really seen outside of a hospital but it's something we'll just have to get used to for everyone's health and safety.”
Although a few concerns were voiced over their effectiveness and whether they were appropriate within an education setting…
“I personally am not convinced by the effectiveness of masks. I have looked at evidence from WHO and other bodies and the evidence appears to be inconclusive. I feel that it has been introduced to be "seen to be doing something."
“I work with young children and I don't think it would work quite so well due to the look and because it's harder to hear someone when they’re wearing a mask.”
Not to be confused with ‘lock-ins at your local’ (those days have gone guys!) regional lockdowns look likely to be used in the future, as a way of containing the virus, once the national approach has lifted. So, we asked our panel their thoughts on this and almost half thought it was a positive idea.
“It does make sense to focus on regions that have higher rates and impose further measures to prevent further damage.”
“I think it is a smart idea and will become increasingly necessary once restrictions are completely lifted, as there will inevitably be small pockets of infection that need to be contained in order to prevent a second wave.”
That said, there was a feeling that regional lockdowns could be hard to enforce and would depend on the cooperation of the general public.
“As long as people respect the county boundaries and don't cross over 'at risk' regions without thought/precaution, it will work.”
While over a third of respondents wondered just how effective localised lockdowns would be or were unsure about the benefits.
“I prefer a unified national approach.”
“I'm not sure how effective it can be.”
Never have the words ‘uncertain’, ‘unprecedented’ or ‘strange’ been used so frequently to describe the times we’re living in, as they are right now. And, as lockdown restrictions start to lift, an air of uncertainty seems to prevail amongst our panel, with many still unsure about what advice to trust, what the future will look like and how it will personally affect them. Our lockdown panel are providing us with some valuable insight during this unusual time. So, we’ll continue to follow them on this emotional rollercoaster and keep you updated with any developments. To ask the panel a question or discover more about our research please contact Rachel Ditchfield (firstname.lastname@example.org). You can find all the weekly findings here.