Today’s update includes:
- Requests, Offers and Updates from the Stroud Coronavirus Community Response team & beyond
- Summary of key local, national and international news
Requests, Offers and Updates posted in the Stroud Coronavirus Community Response Facebook group
- We shared an important update about the reduction in the Government’s coronavirus threat level. This step went against advice from all four of the UK’s chief medical officers. This is important context for everyone as we make decisions and judgements about the precautions we are all taking. The Guardian reports that “all four of the UK’s chief medical officers rejected suggestions from No. 10 that the coronavirus threat level could be reduced because it contradicted evidence that showed the virus was still widespread.”
- We also shared an important update for self-employed people, from an article on the OpenDemocracy website. This explains that “because the Self Employment Income Support Scheme grant rolls three months’ income into one month’s payment, it will take many people above the monthly income level beyond which they no longer receive benefits. This could cause problems for claimants who have not been able to cover their living costs during lockdown, and have spent their grant clearing debts and rent arrears.”
- Public Health England (PHE) has published a “descriptive review of data on disparities in the risk and outcomes from COVID-19”. The report “confirms that the impact of COVID-19 has replicated existing health inequalities and, in some cases, has increased them.” PHE adds that “the results of this review need to be widely discussed and considered by all those involved in and concerned with the national and local response to COVID-19.” We take this to mean community response groups and mutual aid networks as well as local health services and other authorities.
- James Bee shared a video about the uneven impact of Covid-19 on Black and Asian people.
- Unpaid carers can access PPE through Gloucestershire Carers Hub if they are either: looking after someone with Covid-19 at end of life, or where there are Covid-19 symptoms in either the carer or cared for, or a member of the household and the carer is providing personal care.
- John Tunnicliffe let us know of possible water supply disruptions in the Dursley area.
- Emily Osler and her team at Stroud Town Council are working with Dr Richard Castle, a chartered psychologist, to host online volunteer support sessions in small groups. The groups are a chance to share experiences with other volunteers in a safe and confidential environment… with a focus on volunteer wellbeing. If you or any volunteer you know would like to take up this opportunity please get in touch: email@example.com or 07763 567400.
- Sarah Dixon shared Ezra Klein’s informative video on virus transmission in the outdoors. More resources are being added in the comments below.
- Chrissie Lowery shared her offer of wash bags, masks or scrubs for schools or other places in need.
- Rachel Fairburn shared news from a JustGiving fundraiser that has been enabling the creation of scrubs and laundry bags that have been donated and dispatched to many places including NHS Staff at Gloucestershire Royal Hospital, HMP Eastwood Park, Gloucestershire Community Paediatric Physiotherapy and Occupational Therapy Team and others.
- Hannah Basson shared the guidance for health workers regarding PPE, with the reminder that many of us could be in positions of similar risk, not just healthcare workers – if we are car-sharing, going into a house to do a job, or unable to social-distance at work, we should be taking similar levels of precaution and thinking about using PPE wherever possible.
- The Webworks computer shop in Stroud town centre is now opening for longer.
- We published our weekly statistical roundup yesterday, with apologies that we missed last week. We continue to aim to make these updates weekly. Please let us know if you would be interested in helping with this task.
More about the Stroud Coronavirus Community Response group
- We’d really like more moderators and admins for our Facebook group and website. Current moderators can help you understand your role and support you in working with the technology. Please get in touch: firstname.lastname@example.org.
- We now have 4,329 members! Please invite your friends to grow this community. And please do introduce yourself and let us know anything you’d like to see in the group related to coronavirus and how we can work together to get through the pandemic and its impacts.
- Please take a look at the Group Purpose and Guidelines if you haven’t read them recently.
Summary of key local, national and international news
We are now providing our main summary of local, national and international statistical data on a weekly basis rather than daily.
- NHS Gloucestershire CCG has a new Covid-19 website “providing information to help you stay safe during this challenging time, guide you through some of the changes to the way local health services are being provided and keep you up to date on the latest local news and information.”
- There have been nearly 80 coronavirus outbreaks in Gloucestershire care homes, with one in three homes reporting cases (Gloucestershire Live).
- Gloucestershire Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust have announced the temporary closure of Cheltenham A&E, and the overnight closure of the MIU, which is now open only 8am-8pm.
- A report in the Health Service Journal claims that third-party submissions were left out of the government-commissioned report on the disproportionate effects of Covid-19 on black, Asian and minority ethnic people. The report alleges the government removed a section detailing responses from third parties, many of whom highlighted structural racism. Public Health England said it had engaged with more than 1,000 people during its inquiry. But the report, which has been criticised for failing to investigate the reasons for the disparities or make recommendations on how to address them, did not mention the consultations. The Muslim Council of Britain (MCB) said it had contacted PHE to ask why its evidence was not included. “The MCB is seeking further clarification from PHE as to why the report removed the submission from the MCB and others.” (via The Guardian).
- Home Secretary Priti Patel has confirmed plans to force arrivals to the UK to isolate for 14 days. She said leaving isolation prematurely in England could result in a fine of up to £1,000. (BBC)
- The chair of the House of Commons health committee, former Health Secretary Jeremy Hunt, has criticised the government for failing to release test and trace data. Hunt told the test and trace programme’s chief, Dido Harding, “…it is very hard to scrutinise what the government is doing if we’re not given the data that allows us to do that.” (via The Guardian)
- We posted a summary of a data report from the Office for National Statistics (ONS) on “Coronavirus and the latest indicators for the UK economy and society“. Headlines include: a fall in the proportion of people in Great Britain staying at home (other than leaving for work, exercise, essential shopping or medical need) from 81% (14-17 May) to 73% (21-24 May), and a fall in new declarations and new claims for Universal Credit. 24% of businesses who have currently paused trading expect to start trading again in the next 4 weeks, compared with 31% who expect to start trading in more than 4 weeks’ time.
- Germany will continue to warn against non-essential travel to the UK while it maintains its 14-day quarantine rules, despite removing curbs for travel to the rest of Europe.
- Entry checks at land borders to Austria introduced because of the pandemic will be scrapped from Thursday, except for those at the border with Italy, Austria’s foreign minister has announced.
Please remember we have a (growing) list of resources to support your emotional and mental health during this time on our website. The following numbers may be useful:
- Samaritans: 116 123
- Domestic Violence Hotline: 0808 2000 247
- Mind: 0300 123 3393
- Age UK: 0800 169 6565
- Childline: 0800 1111.
Thanks to everyone who helped create this update through our Facebook group. If you submit posts, we will often decline posting them to the discussion directly and instead hold them till the single daily summary – to try to reduce the number of posts in the feed and make it easier for people to follow the information. Please continue to submit posts to admins for this purpose with the appropriate flag: one of REQUEST / OFFER / UPDATE / QUESTION / COMMENTARY.