What the papers say – May 21

A Government promise to have contact tracing launched by June 1 to help the reopening of schools leads Thursday’s papers.

The Daily Telegraph covers the Prime Minister’s vow, which the Daily Mail says will involve using a “25,000-strong army” to identify the contacts of infected coronavirus sufferers.

The Daily Mirror says the Government is in a “Trace against time” to deliver its tracking system by the promised date, with The Independent reporting that the smartphone app being trialled as part of the system “won’t be ready” in time.

Meanwhile, The Guardian says NHS and care staff will be offered a virus antibody test “within days”.

The i reports that, if the UK avoids a second coronavirus outbreak, Britons could be allowed to take breaks at holiday homes, campsites and hotels.

The Government has been “shamed” by a Syrian refugee who has appealed for assistance for his family if he dies while working as a hospital cleaner during the pandemic, according to Metro.

Staying on the wards, The Times reports that hospital admissions have fallen to their lowest level since the pandemic began, and the Daily Express says Health Secretary Matt Hancock “is promising a new war” on obesity after it was linked to Covid-19 deaths.

The Bank of England is considering introducing negative interest rates to help stimulate financial recovery, reports the Financial Times.

The Sun reports that Alan Partridge star Steve Coogan has furloughed two staff at his country estate, “leaving the taxpayer to stump up” most of the pair’s wages.

And the Daily Star calls for “the frying squad” as it reports on a “greedy” policeman banned from all British police forces for stealing fry-ups during his first week at work.

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