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Health Secretary vows to consider review of family lockdown fines in wake of Cummings fiasco

THE government promised today to consider scrapping fines handed to families who have travelled during lockdown for childcare purposes.

It comes after PM Boris Johnson’s government was accused of double standards — even from Tory MPs — for backing his senior adviser over his much criticised road trip from London to Durham.

Dominic Cummings claimed he had made the trip to visit his family as he and his wife, who were both ill with suspected coronavirus, feared that they could not look after their four-year-old son.

The drive, on March 27, was four days after Mr Johnson announced the lockdown in England.

More than 30 Tory MPs are calling for Mr Cummings to resign.

During the Downing Street press conference, a member of the public called Martin from Brighton asked whether the government will review all penalty fines imposed on families travelling for the same reasons as claimed by Mr Cummings.

Health Secretary Matt Hancock said that he would discuss with the Treasury whether to scrap the fines, adding that ministers understand the impact and need for adequate childcare. He  said that he would commit to making an announcement on this topic.

Previously, police could award on-the-spot fines of up to £60 for lockdown rule-breakers, reduced to £30 if paid within 14 days.

Last week, the fines were increased to a minimum of £100, halved if paid within a fortnight.

Fines double for each offence an individual commits, up to a total of £3,200.

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