New data finds Belper had Amber Valley's highest coronavirus death count in first four months of pandemic
Belper has had more deaths linked to the coronavirus than anywhere else in Amber Valley, according to newly published data.
The figures from the Office for National Statistics show that 16 people died with the virus between March and June in an area classed as Belper Town. A further six were recorded in Belper Far Laund.
The official measure counts those cases where coronavirus was the underlying cause or was mentioned on the death certificate as a contributory factor.
Across Amber Valley, that accounts for 101 people who have died since the start of the pandemic, with 14 deaths linked to coronavirus in June.
The lowest death totals in the borough, with three each, were recorded in the areas Kilburn & Horsley and Heanor East & Langley Mill.
The Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government classes Belper Town as one of the most relatively deprived areas in the west of the borough, and its COVID-19 story hints at broader national trends.
Deprived areas across England have so far seen death rates more than double that of the most affluent parts – 139.6 per 100,000 compared to 63.4.
Sara Willcocks, of the anti-poverty charity Turn2us, said: "We may all be weathering the same storm, but we are certainly not all in the same boat.
"For a society that believes in compassion, we must right these wrongs of social injustices.”
She added: "We urge the government to focus on levelling up not just regions but also our neighbourhoods.
"Everyone deserves access to high quality jobs, affordable housing and a social security system that gives people the support they need, when they need it, so local communities can thrive together."
A Department of Health and Social Care spokesman said the disparity in mortality rates highlighted in the report is greater than the inequality seen in previous years.
He added: “We are committing to better understanding and reducing disparity in health outcomes – from coronavirus and more broadly.
“We continue to learn as much as we can, as quickly as we can, about this virus – who it affects and how best to protect those who may be more vulnerable than others, while keeping everyone safe.”