CORONAVIRUS LATEST: Community asked to pull together

Southend Council is asking the local community and businesses to unite and focus on three key things as the coronavirus situation continues to evolve nationally and locally.

With three confirmed cases in Southend-on-Sea and more expected, local Public Health officials have said that local people should do three simple things at this time to help:

  • Read, trust and follow the official national and local advice being issued regularly by the Government, NHS and the council including practising good hygiene, primarily by washing your hands properly for 20 seconds and more regularly, and staying at home if you have a high temperature or a new and continuous cough, even if it’s mild
  • Look out for vulnerable members of the community, including elderly relatives and neighbours
  • Shop responsibly at this time and with other people in mind. National supermarkets have confirmed if everyone shops normally there will be enough for everyone

Cllr Trevor Harp, cabinet member responsible for public health, says: “It is more important than ever that we unite as a community and help minimise the impact of coronavirus locally.

“We are working hard across the council and with our partners and contractors to ensure that we can continue delivering key services and most importantly protect the most vulnerable members of our community.

“Individually we can all help by following and acting on the national advice being issued by the Government and NHS for example, and doing simple things like all of us washing our hands properly and more often, right through from children at school to adults at work and home. We should also stay at home for seven days if we are displaying coronavirus symptoms.

“Also, looking out for elderly relatives, friends and neighbours has never been more important. What may seem like small favours could be really important even if it is doing some shopping for them or picking up a prescription they need. Please also make sure they have contact phone numbers they can use if they need something or need to get in touch with you.

“It is worth reiterating that at this time the current analysis from Public Health England suggests that most healthy people who get the virus will only experience mild symptoms and that is why it is most important that we focus our efforts on protecting the most vulnerable people locally.”

Cllr Ian Gilbert, leader of the council, says: “We are monitoring Government announcements and advice constantly, and are ready to continue acting on and sharing that advice locally. As a large organisation ourselves we are reviewing our own business continuity arrangements and particularly focussing on those key services such as social care, ensuring we do all we can to ensure elderly and vulnerable people get the care and services they need at this time.

“We are aware of a wealth of support and community help being offered already and we are looking internally and with our partners at how we can best coordinate this activity in a helpful an structured way and hope to announce more on that soon.

“This is the time for local people and communities to unite and look out for each other.”

For trusted information, please visit: www.southend.gov.uk/coronavirus

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Mick Ferris

Editor Email: [email protected]