Don’t Kill Granny: the Preston campaign that is winning hearts
A month ago, authorities of Preston, UK, imposed restrictions on household mixing in view of the sudden spike in coronavirus cases among local youth. The campaign slogan for the resultant lockdown was, “Don’t Kill Granny”, putting the spotlight on how ignoring social distancing can result in increased fatality among elders of the community.
In August 2020, the community of Preston in Lancashire saw a jump in the number of COVID-19 infected cases, and local authorities soon came to the conclusion that this was the result of negligence on the part of young citizens, especially the under-30s. Disregard for social distancing and social isolation were the catalysts behind the spike in cases.
Preston authorities imposed a lockdown, with strict regulations in place discouraging public mingling. Pubs and other gathering places were shut down and people, especially the youth of the area, were urged to stay inside and even maintain social distancing inside their homes.
Different households were restricted from gathering at homes, gardens, and parks. The local authorities explained why this happened: people thought their relatives, neighbours, and friends living in their proximity, could not be infected and were safe to socialize with. However, the truth is the virus does not discriminate between relatives and strangers; it can come from anybody. Usually, infections come through those people with whom one is in contact every day. This fact is the basis of the “Don’t Kill Granny” campaign that in sync with the imposed lockdown and awareness linked to the virus.
Since the reason for the increased case count was demographically pointed out to be people in their teens and twenties, the city authorities launched the campaign to highlight the risk of socializing for young people. The slogan says it straightforwardly that if they socialize and roam around freely, they could contract the virus and bring it home only to infect their elders and senior citizens. This also underlines the gravity of the situation for the elder citizens. Senior members of the community are at a higher risk of infection and fatality from the coronavirus, as it can trigger underlying diseases and lead to serious complications for aged patients. “Don’t Kill Granny” sends out the message to the youth that in order to save their elders from the risk of death, they need to adhere to lockdown restrictions.
Many commoners have come forward saying that the slogan is insensitive and unthoughtful in the light of recent deaths due to the virus. Some youngsters reckon that the slogan will offend people recovering from the loss of a grandparent or an elder.
However, senior citizens have largely welcomed the lockdown and the slogan. They feel like the young should be sensitized to the consequences of breaking the rules of lockdown and social distancing. Seniors and elders are of the opinion that youngsters need to understand the responsibility that befalls them at the time of a pandemic and strictly adhere to the lockdown, keeping their family’s safety above social activities.
“Don’t Kill Granny” is a powerful message capturing the need for social distancing in just three words. Capitalizing on guilt and emotions linked with losing a loved one, the campaign targets the psyche of the youth effectively.