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COVID-19: Letter to the community of North East Lincolnshire

9:30 am, Wednesday, 4th November 2020 - 4 weeks ago

COVID-19

To everyone in our communities and businesses,

As we head into another national lockdown, it’s important we use this message to assure you that we’re all working together to do everything we can to help each and every one of you through these difficult times.

The situation in our area remains of major concern due to the sharp rise in cases and the pressure this is now putting our health system under. Numbers in the area are growing much more rapidly than in the first wave, particularly amongst our elderly residents, and to slow the virus down, it’s hugely important we all follow the rules and guidance.

The new lockdown will bring extra challenges and an understandable degree of concern and some frustration; however, it’s absolutely vital that we join together as we did in the Spring and do whatever’s required in order to save lives and protect the most vulnerable.

Everyone can play their part in doing all they can to reduce the spread of the virus, protect the NHS and protect one another. Throughout this pandemic, you, the residents of North East Lincolnshire, our businesses and communities, have come together and shown a collective public spirit and determination to curb the spread of the virus and protect not only themselves, but their neighbours and loved ones.

Our collective response must be driven by equal degrees of resilience and kindness to see us through this major public health challenge. Key to that is being mindful and considerate of others and checking that elderly and vulnerable friends, family and neighbours are coping. Councils and public health bodies touch people’s lives in many ways – collecting bins, working with NHS colleagues to oversee our health, supporting business- services that affect us all.

Our staff have also been affected by Covid-19 and our response is monitored on a daily basis to cope with the challenges we face. In the first wave, we redeployed resources and staff away from their day-to-day activity into the highest priority services to protect the most vulnerable in our communities. We will keep this under consideration in case we need to do this again.

Our renewed focus is directed to dealing with the second wave of this pandemic and the effects locally, whilst making sure that, as far as practicable, business as usual service delivery happens. It’s likely that some services will need to change again, but we’ll keep you informed through the council’s and CCG’s online channels if this happens.

We came through the first wave, we now have to navigate our way through the second. We can’t afford to be complacent as we head into the winter. That means as well as following the rules in place now and those that come into place from tomorrow, we need everyone to continue doing the basics in order tackle the virus.

It is absolutely essential that you reduce your contact with others as much as possible, continue to wash your hands regularly, wear a face covering in indoor public spaces and maintain social distancing with anyone outside of your household or support bubble.  Remember the simple phrase: “ Hands – Face – Space.”

We continue to monitor the national, regional and local situation and will continue to follow Government and Public Health England advice. Our response will remain proportionate, flexible and evidence-based, led by our Public Health and CCG experts and supported by the wide range of professions in our workforce and that of our partners.

We know from the first wave that many of you, particularly businesses, were affected financially. When we get more details from Government about what financial support will be available through the lockdown and beyond, we’ll be letting people know how they can access this as soon as possible.

There are also a number of other support packages available for people to access, whether in work or not. We urge people to look for these and access them wherever they are from. Not all are through the council – information is available through the DWP, HMRC and your employer.

We’ll be using all of the channels open to us to regularly update you of what we’re doing and to inform you of unavoidable disruption to any services and other actions we’re taking; please accept that all our decisions will be taken with the health and wellbeing of our residents and our employees as the absolute priority.

Thank you for your continued support and stay safe and well.

Cllr Philip Jackson, Leader, North East Lincolnshire Council

Steve Pintus, Director of Public Health, North East Lincolnshire

Dr Peter Melton, Clinical Chief Officer, NHS North East Lincolnshire Clinical Commissioning Group.

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