Should we stop clapping for the NHS?

Two NHS workers speak exclusively to Tahir Magazine

A horn pierces the silence of the late afternoon, aided by the beating of pans and the claps of people across the country.

Every week on Thursday at 8 o’clock, thousands come outside in unity to applaud key workers who have helped save lives during this pandemic. However, this clap could be the last as the founder of the event thinks it should end.

The event is in its 10th week now and was started by Annemarie Plas who was inspired by similar events in the Netherlands and around the world. When it was first held on the 26th of March it was meant to be a one-off for NHS workers, but due to its popularity it had expanded to all key workers and has happened weekly. 
The NHS was a great “blessing,” and we “should not take it for granted.” 
Many welcomed the event to show their support behind key workers and bringing the community together. Many famous buildings like Wembley Stadium and the London Eye have also been lit up in blue, the colour of the NHS, to show their support for them.

The event has seen some criticism though. The leader of the Labour Party, Keir Starmer, said that key workers have been “overlooked and underpaid,” and others believe it would be more beneficial if the NHS were getting the PPE they needed.

Dr Mubarak Jajja, a GP, spoke exclusively to Tahir Magazine. He said that the clap was a “very good gesture,” but that it is the right time to stop it, otherwise it would “lose its value.” When asked whether the public could show other ways of support like through donations or better PPE, Dr Jajja highlighted the fact that the “population doesn’t have any control over PPE,” and, in his view, it is not right for the public to be expected to donate when “many of them are also at risk of losing their jobs.”

Amtul Hayee sahiba, who is dentist, believed that the government should show more appreciation for key workers by giving “some vouchers for grocery,” and “special gifts.” She mentioned that clapping was a good way to “show the appreciation,” and that “everyone can contribute,” to clapping. She also thinks the clapping should end but the “respect,” to NHS workers should not. She said that the NHS was a great “blessing,” and we “should not take it for granted.” 

by Saqib Jajja, Junior Journalist with the Atfal Trainee Scheme

05th June 2020