The writer behind BBC drama Together used his TV Baftas speech to read a letter from families bereaved by Covid-19 that criticised the Government’s handling of the pandemic.
Together, starring Sharon Horgan and James McAvoy, won the award for single drama.
Taking to the stage, scriptwriter Dennis Kelly read a letter from the campaign group Covid-19 Bereaved Families for Justice calling for a public inquiry to be expedited.
Reading from a sheet, he said: “The UK has seen one of the worst global death tolls through the pandemic.
“This Government’s response has ranged from careless to downright negligent.
“Our loved ones’ lives treated as expendable, collateral damage.
“Bereaved families have been ignored, lied to and gaslighted by a Government seemingly too busy partying to spare us thought, even daring to tell us that they were too busy to meet with us or start an inquiry promptly.
“We may never know how many of our loved ones’ lives could have been saved if things had been done differently, but we will not rest until we know that everything possible has been done to ensure others are spared this heartbreak and pain.”
"You have paid a fine. Our loved ones paid with their lives."
— Covid-19 Bereaved Families for Justice UK (@CovidJusticeUK) April 12, 2022
Together, written by Kelly and directed by Stephen Daldry, follows a family from the first days of the coronavirus pandemic in March 2020 to the present day.
Continuing to read the letter, Kelly added: “Prime Minister, if you are listening, start the Covid inquiry now so we can learn lessons and save lives.”
In a statement, the Government said: “Every death from Covid-19 is a tragedy and our sympathies are with everyone who has lost loved ones.
“We have always said there are lessons to be learnt from the pandemic and the Prime Minister has committed to holding a full public inquiry, to be chaired by Baroness Hallett.”