Brent ‘worst affected of all’ in UK for coronavirus deaths

Covid-19 levels in Tower Hamlets are among highest in the country. Picture: Niall Carson/PA

Covid-19 levels in Tower Hamlets are among highest in the country. Picture: Niall Carson/PA - Credit: Niall Carson/PA

The highest Covid mortality rates between March 1 and June 6 were in Brent, new figures reveal.

The borough had the highest rate in the UK with 210.9 deaths per 100,000 population, followed by Newham (196.8 deaths per 100,000 population) and Hackney (182.9 deaths per 100,000 population), according to the Office of National Statistics (ONS).

Figures released on June 12 show that people living in the most deprived areas of England continue to experience coronavirus mortality rates more than double those living in the least deprived areas.

Dave Innes, head of economics at the Joseph Rowntree Foundation, said: “Before the pandemic hit, there were signs that our record on tackling poverty and health inequalities was unravelling. Covid-19 has laid bare just how stark those inequalities are.

“It is completely unacceptable that someone’s life chances are so profoundly affected by where they live.

“[Friday’s] statistics must act as a wake-up call - as a society with a strong sense of decency and compassion, we can and must do better.”

Leader of Brent Council, Cllr Muhammed Butt, said: “Across the UK, Coronavirus has hit the poorest and most diverse boroughs, including Brent, especially hard.

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“Nine out of 10 of the worst affected areas are London boroughs and as one of the least well-off boroughs with the most diverse population we have been worst affected of all.

“The evidence is there to show that pre-existing inequalities, often linked to jobs, housing and health, play a major role in how at risk you are.

“The higher risks for Brent residents are simply unacceptable when compared to areas which are richer and less diverse.

“The solutions won’t be quick or easy to deliver but we are determined to build a healthier, fairer society. We now need a clear policy focus from the Government to work with and support council’s and communities like ours to take positive action to promote public health and reduce inequalities which are costing people’s lives.

“As businesses begin to reopen this week I remind everyone to protect themselves, and others, by keeping your distance to avoid bringing the virus home to a loved one.”