United Kingdom

Three in four more worried about impact of lockdown than catching coronavirus, poll finds 

Almost three in four people are more concerned about the impact of lockdown restrictions than catching coronavirus, according to a new poll.

Young people are far more concerned about the mental health impact of any lockdown - and whether they will lose their job, according to the survey.

Mental health also ranks as a top concern for women, while a third of pensioners are worried about the suspension of cancer screening.

The results come from a poll of 2,000 adults by the Recovery group, which is campaigning against excessive government Covid restrictions.

The group's co-founder, Jon Dobinson, said: 'This poll shows that more and more people share our concerns about the terrible damage lockdowns, fear and restrictions are doing.

'The problems are huge in every age group, but it's the young who are being hit hardest and worst of all, the evidence is growing that suicide rates are going through the roof.

Young people are far more concerned about the mental health impact of any lockdown - and whether they will lose their job, according to the survey (stock image) 

'But the government and indeed the opposition seem determined to ignore the crisis they are fuelling.'

Recovery has put forward its 'five reasonable demands' as they call for ministers to act with more humanity and balance the need to tackle Covid with the impact its policies are having on mental health and treatment for killer diseases like cancer.

The survey found that 71 per cent of the UK are more concerned about the consequences of lockdown than catching coronavirus.

People were asked to rank their biggest concern: whether they will catch Covid, the mental health impact of lockdowns, the suspension of cancer screening, whether they will have a job next year, and the impact of restrictions on the young.

The fear of catching Covid was the top concern for just 29 per cent of people, followed by mental health on 23 per cent.

The suspension of cancer screening came next on 21 per cent, job prospects on 11 per cent and the impact on children on 10 per cent. Some 6 per cent said they were concerned about none of these.

It found that young people aged between 18 and 34 rank mental health as their top concern, and that 18 to 24 year olds are more concerned about having a job next year than catching the disease.

Women also rank mental health as one of their main concerns - tied with Covid.

The impact on cancer screening is of universal concern for all groups. Almost a third of over 65s are worried about it.

Londoners more anxious about losing their jobs than any other region at nearly double the national average, and private sector workers over twice as anxious about this is those employed by the state.

Nottingham City Centre is pictured earily empty on the first night of tier 3 lockdown

Workers in the public sector have the highest anxiety over the mental health impact of coronavirus.

The survey also found that those with the lowest levels of education are those most concerned about Covid.

Mr Dobinson added: 'Every death is tragic, but it's hard to think of anything worse than a young life cut short by suicide. That's what the Covid-19 measures are doing to our children and young people.

'Next week is Stress Awareness Week. It's the perfect time for them to change tack and reverse the cruel and confused policies that are causing this appalling tragedy.'

The campaign is backed by senior doctors and NHS staff, leading authorities in epidemiology and infectious diseases, mental health experts, entrepreneurs and leaders of business, sporting stars and world champions, TV celebrities and chefs, stars of the performing arts, bands and musicians.

Its supporters include former Supreme Court judge Lord Sumption, cancer expert Professor Karol Sikora and TV psychologist Emma Kenny.

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