Bell Ribeiro-Addy MP

Member of Parliament for Streatham (and parts of Balham, Clapham Common, Tulse Hill and Brixton Hill)
Prospective Parliamentary Candidate for Clapham & Brixton Hill

Press Release – Streatham MP slams “shambolic” test & trace system

Sep 15, 2020 | Press Releases

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Bell has today slammed the Government’s coronavirus test and trace system, citing complaints from multiple constituents told testing was unavailable, or asked to travel unreasonable distances in order to get a test. 

With cases on the rise in Lambeth, concerned Streatham residents have written in to report difficulties accessing all three of the major types of testing. Those reporting difficulties include key workers, including teachers who’ve seen infections on the rise in their schools and health workers.  

This reflects a wider national situation where people are struggling to get access to tests for coronavirus. LBC reported yesterday on how its journalists were unable to secure a test in any of the top ten coronavirus hostpots in the UK. 

Today, Health Secretary Matt Hancock admitted in Parliament that it would take “weeks” to resolve the issue. 

The news also comes as hospital bosses warned that a lack of access to testing for frontline NHS workers was putting services at risk. 

Bell Ribeiro-Addy, Labour Member of Parliament for Streatham, said: 

“The influx of complaints from my constituents shows that our shambolic outsourced test and trace system has reached breaking point. 

Today, the Government said it would still take weeks to fix these issues but we were promised a working system months ago now. The current system is clearly beyond repair. 

With cases rising again, we should move towards a nationally funded, locally led test, track & isolate programme.” 


  1. Daily Mirror, Alarming data shows 193 places in England where coronavirus cases are rising (14 September 2020)
  2. LBC News, Testing scandal: No coronavirus tests available in top 10 England hotspots (14 September 2020)
  3. BBC News, Coronavirus: NHS staff off work due to testing shortages, say bosses (15 September 2020)
  4. BBC News, Coronavirus: Testing issues ‘will be solved in a matter of weeks’, says Hancock (15 September 2020) 

For further information about this press release, please contact Ollie Collard, Communications Officer, Office of Bell Ribeiro-Addy MP at