Council News 209
This week’s news from around the Council.
- The latest figures in Staffordshire, including a district breakdown can be found here.
- The Government’s 4 Step roadmap out of lockdown can be found here.
- Further detail on the Governments 4 step roadmap can be found here.
- The Government’s roadmap went live on 8 March. It is the light at the end of a very long tunnel for us all, but these dates are not set in stone as they must be achieved.
- On Monday 8 March schools and colleges returned for face-to-face learning. Everyone in a household where children and young people are at school or college should be getting tested twice weekly. This can be done through the Community Testing sites, workplace testing or by ordering tests to do at home (if you cannot get to a place to collect them). Click here for information on the pop-up testing site and to order your home testing kits.
- Covid-19 Additional key messages
- Sunday 14 March Mother’s Day – Give your Mum the gift of safety this Mother’s Day. As hard as it may be, please do not mix households; keep your loved ones safe.
- Remember, if you are part of a support bubble, take regular tests.
- The rates of cases, hospitalisation and deaths are falling in South Staffordshire, but, as we saw last year, things can change rapidly, particularly as the lockdown eases.
- There are concerns that people are neglecting guidance, especially in supermarkets which is potentially linked to having received their vaccine. Being vaccinated helps you avoid getting severely ill with the virus, but you can still experience being unwell, and you can still pass it on to others – protect your loved one’s!
- The dates identified in the roadmap are targets to aim for rather than guaranteed end points, and messaging will reinforce what the public must do for the changes to be implemented.
- Covid-19 vaccinations
- Vaccines are a critical part of our plan. New data from a Public Health England study show that both the Pfizer-BioNTech and the Oxford-AstraZeneca vaccines significantly reduce severe Covid-19 in people over 70 years of age. The vaccine is safe – please encourage our residents to take up the vaccine offer.
- Remember, social distancing rules must still be followed even after vaccination.
- Adult carers fall into priority group six and will soon be invited to book an appointment for their vaccination over the coming weeks. Please wait to be invited for your vaccine and do not try and call your GP as doing so may prevent a patient getting through who needs urgent care.
- New enquiries to register as a carer can be made by speaking to your GP or local authority. Registration is subject to eligibility checks through the statutory carer’s assessment or assignment of carer’s flag on the GP record, advice is also available from 119.
- Community Testing – Lateral Flow Tests (LFT)
For residents who need to be out and about during lockdown or those living in a Covid-19 hotspot area it is still important to attend lateral flow testing routinely, irrespective of whether they have had the vaccine or not. There will be nine pop up Covid-19 community testing sites in the District for the 15 – 21 March 2021:
- Monday 15 March 2021
South Staffordshire – Perton, Civic Centre, 10am – 12:30pm
South Staffordshire – Penkridge, Haling Dene Centre, 2pm – 4pm
- Tuesday 16 March 2021
South Staffordshire – Great Wyrley, Scout and Guide Hut, 10am – 1.30pm
- Wednesday 17 March 2021
South Staffordshire – Featherstone, Community Centre, 10am -12:30pm
South Staffordshire – Essington, Community Centre, 2pm – 4pm
- Thursday 18 March 2021
South Staffordshire – Perton, Civic Centre, 10am – 12.30pm
South Staffordshire – Calf Heath, Village Hall, 2pm – 4pm
- Saturday 20 March 2021
South Staffordshire – Essington, Community Centre, 10am – 12.30
South Staffordshire – Great Wyrley, Scout and Guide Hut, 2pm – 4pm
- The Districts Semi-permanent Covid-19 Lateral Flow Testing (LFT) site will be Wombourne Library, Church Road , Wombourne WV5 9EZ (please check the booking calendar, as times vary on some days).
- Covid-19 Safe Businesses
South Staffordshire Council is working with the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) to contact businesses in South Staffordshire to check they have Covid-secure measures in place and to help tackle Covid-19 in the local area. During the checks, they will look at the Covid-19 control measures present in the business and provide advice and guidance to manage any risks to protect workers, customers and visitors. If a business is not Covid-secure, they will have to put measures in place.
- Leisure’s Fundraising for Comic Relief
South Staffordshire Council’s leisure centres are holding online exercise classes on Friday 19 March which are open to everyone to help raise funds for Red Nose Day. We are asking everyone to wear something red and to donate £5 to take part in as many classes as you like on that day. Click here to find out what classes are running and to book a class and here to donate to Comic Relief.
- Census 2021
- The Office for National Statistics (ONS) has appointed a Census Engagement Manager to support South Staffordshire residents and help make Census 2021 a success.
- Kirat Raj Singh, the area’s Census Engagement Manager will help organisations, charities, faith groups and community leaders within the District raise awareness of the census and the value to residents in taking part.
- Census Engagement Manager Kirat Raj Singh said “With less than a month away from Census day, households across South Staffordshire would have received advance postcards through their letterboxes reminding them of the forthcoming Census. Census day is Sunday 21 March, but you can complete your survey once you have your online access code. Remember, census information leaflets and translation booklets are available in 17 languages and paper census forms can be requested for those that need one. To order a paper copy or information in other formats, please call 0800 141 2021.”
- General Census information can be found here.
- Need further support? Ring the national helpline on 0800 141 2021.
- For more South Staffordshire specific support email Kirat Raj Sing at [email protected]
- Wombourne couple fined £10,000 for felling locally important tree
Click here to find out about a successful prosecution for the removal of a protected Tree.
- Council Job Vacancies
- Customer Services General Advisor (12 month fixed term), Closing 5pm on Friday 26th March 2021 – application information.
- Career Graded Senior Planning Officers x2, Development Management, Closing 5pm Monday 22 March 2021 – application information.
- Senior Arboricultural Officer Development Management, Closing 5pm Monday 22 March 2021 – application information.
- Strategic Projects Assistant Team Manager, Development Management, Closing 5pm Monday 22 March 2021 – application information.
- Next week’s Council Committee/Panel meetings
- Planning Committee – Tuesday, 16 March 2021 – 6.30 pm – Public virtual meeting via Teams.
- Special Council meeting – Wednesday, 17 March 2021 – 5.30 pm – Public virtual meeting via Teams.
Members of the public can virtually attend these meetings via Microsoft Teams. In the news section at the bottom of the Council’s website, you will find the relevant news item that will include a link to enable you to join.
- Funding for Community/Voluntary organisations
A new £150 million pound fund has been announced. This will help community/voluntary organisations and groups to buy or take over local community assets. Bids of up to £250,000 (match funded) can be submitted and the first bids will be open in June 2021. Please click here, for further information on this funding opportunity.
- Emotional and Mental Wellbeing
- Support resources
Do you know someone who’s emotional wellbeing has suffered because of the impact of the lockdown and the Covid-19? It has been particularly hard as many of our socialising venues and those where we seek support have been shut. But do you know that many organisations have moved their services online? You can chat, text or ring many helplines. Click here to find contact details of many national organisations that offer support around:
- Men’s mental health
- Victim support
- Alcohol misuse
- Eating disorders
- Mental health support for those with learning disabilities
- Parenting – all aspects of this important job, including bullying
- Relationship management
- The mental health of children and young people
- Substance misuse
This link provides information on depression and helps you to find online support groups.
- Free training
Free training is available to professionals and volunteers working with young people across Staffordshire to support knowledge of mental health issues in young people. To enrol for one of the 4 session courses please click on the links below.
- Community Mental Health Transformation: Have your say
The NHS is looking to get the views of local people in South Staffordshire where there is a concern around access and/or outcomes for mental health. The session is intended to test out some initial findings to see what people think and is scheduled for Tuesday 13 April 2021 at 10:30am – 12pm. Please click here to book or to find out more about the Eventbrite ‘Community Mental Health Transformation session.
- Safer Communities
- Safer Sleep Week – 15-21 March 2021
- Safe and Sound sessions
Safe and Sound sessions by Staffordshire Fire and Rescue Services are delivered directly to schools. The topics covered are:
- Fire safety
- Road safety
- Staying safe around the railway
- Making a 999 call
- Parents and organisations can access these on demand here
- S.T.A.R.S – Sharing Talent and Recognising Success
The Voice Project are launching this award which will celebrate the achievements of our children and young people who are in Staffordshire’s Care. Achievements of any kind can be celebrated. For younger children, things such as learning to walk, learning to talk, learning a new interest or sport e.g. learning to swim or ride a bike, being kind to others, making new friends, being helpful or gaining more confidence. Older children/young people could be nominated for independence skills, continued educational attainment, participation in sporting or community activities, Duke of Edinburgh Award, artistic achievement, employment, gaining an apprenticeship, voluntary work or an area of personal development or anything else special you feel should be celebrated in their lives.All nominations are accepted from 0-25 years providing the young person has a Staffordshire Social Worker. Please complete your nomination form for S.T.A.R.S here.
- Staffordshire Day 2021 to feature first county-wide film competition
Filmmakers from Staffordshire and beyond are being encouraged, by Enjoy Staffordshire, Staffordshire County Council and the county’s other local authorities, to enter the Staffordshire Day Film Competition. The competition is open to professional and amateur filmmakers, and the deadline for submissions is Saturday 3 April 2021. Full details on the film competition, including terms and conditions can be found here. Any movie which promotes the county can be submitted, as long as it was made within the last five years and is not longer than 30 minutes. New projects can be submitted too, but makers must adhere to all Covid-19 safety guidelines on mask-wearing, social distancing and remaining within their local area to film. There are six categories: Drama/Comedy, Documentary, Animation/Experimental, Business in the Community, Mini-Movie, and Young Filmmaker. The overall winner will win a cheque for £500 from the competition sponsors, Staffordshire Film Archive.
Everyone is encouraged to submit news items, please email: [email protected]