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Church News

Archbishop of Canterbury hopes for social care inquiry after coronavirus

by Press Association

The Archbishop of Canterbury has said he hopes for a Royal Commission into social care after the coronavirus pandemic.

Speaking to BBC News, Most Rev Justin Welby said he hoped there would be lessons learned after this crisis, mentioning a Royal Commission, a rarely used form of public inquiry.

The archbishop said: "What I hope and pray that we learn is first of all that we cannot base our society on the idolatry of wealth, even of health.

"Secondly, that we build a vision of the society we want. We have a commission of inquiry into what we learned from this, not to blame but to learn.

"We have Royal Commission on how we look after social care."

When asked whether austerity measures should be put in place after the pandemic, he said it would be "catastrophic", particularly for already disadvantaged people.

Archbishop Justin also spoke about mental health in the pandemic, stressing that there is reasonable anxiety which may be difficult to talk about.

He said: "When I talk to the doctor who I talk to from time to time he says the point about anxiety and depression is they're there to tell you something.

"Loss, grief, anxiety are traumas and trauma has to be gone through and you can't do it just with the stiff upper lip."

Last month the archbishop delivered the first assembly for the newly-formed virtual Oak National Academy, telling pupils "patience, positivity, and keeping going under pressure" will sustain hope.

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