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Coronavirus 9 April 2020 - 2.00pm general update

This is today's round-up of the latest Coronavirus news on Thursday 9 April 2020.

#StayHomeSaveLives  #HereForSwansea

Stay at Home, Save Lives

The Swans are backing Swansea Council's plea to people to stay at home over the bank holiday weekend to save lives and protect the NHS.

Winger and long-serving player Wayne Routledge is among the familiar faces recording videos that will released this weekend urging people not to travel unnecessarily.

Council beach car parks on Gower are closed, including Port Eynon, Bracelet Bay, Langland and Caswell.

The UK Government guidance on accessing green space and beaches for exercise is "stay local and use open spaces near to your home where possible - do not travel unnecessarily". Further information can be found here: www.gov.uk/government/news/coronavirus-guidance-on-access-to-green-spaces

In addition, residents are still being urged to increase their efforts to keep their distance from other people during the Coronavirus crisis. Get the latest government guidance here: www.gov.uk/coronavirus

 

Bay Studios Field Hospital

Work to transform a Swansea Bay film studios and former factory into a hospital to help manage the expected upsurge in Coronavirus cases will go on through the Easter holiday period. Swansea Council is working with contractors Kier and TRJ to transform the Bay Studios Elba building into a hospital on behalf of the Swansea Bay University Health Board. Work is going on day and night, seven days a week - including Easter - to complete the hospital which will create around 1,000 extra beds for the NHS.

 

Clap for our carers

Tonight at 8.00pm we'll be once again turning the Guildhall blue in tribute to our front-line care workers, our key staff, the NHS and all those who are helping support our communities and save lives during the Coronavirus crisis. Please follow the social distancing rules when you go on to your doorstep this evening to #ClapForOurCarers

 

Emergency childcare: weekend and bank holiday

A number of schools will remain open on Saturday and/or Sunday this weekend to support NHS staff and blue light workers. In addition a number of schools will be open on Friday and/or Monday to continue to support critical workers over the bank holiday.

Those schools that are open have contacted parents directly to inform them of the arrangements.

Staff in these settings have volunteered yet again to work outside the working week and we are very grateful for their actions, during these challenging times.

 

Paid carers recruitment

A big thank-you to everyone who's responded to our recruitment drive for paid carers to help support older and vulnerable people in our communities during the Coronavirus pandemic.

The response so far has been terrific, but we're still very interested in hearing from potential applicants. We're looking for returners to the sector and to those with little or no experience because training will be provided.

If you want to be part of the team supporting us to support the NHS and our communities, find out more on www.swansea.gov.uk/coronaviruscareroles

 

Small business support

So far grant payments in excess of £16m have been authorised to be paid to more than 1,100 small businesses in Swansea. Banks will be putting money into accounts in the coming days, though there may be delays due to banks not working over the Easter Bank Holiday period.

 

Thank you for volunteering

More than 1,000 residents have pledged their support so far in a city-wide recruitment campaign to support the vulnerable during the Coronavirus crisis.

The effort includes supporting the food bank supply network, assisting vulnerable neighbours through Local Area Coordination and Councillor networks and registering their skills and availability as volunteers for a range of organisations or activities via Swansea Council for Voluntary Services.

There is more information about how you can get involved on www.swansea.gov.uk/communityvolunteers or www.scvs.org.uk/coronavirus

 

St Thomas Church Foodbank deliver a tonne of supplies

A food bank in Swansea has delivered more than a tonne of supplies to people in need during the last two weeks and is also making sure every child entitled to free school meals in its area is getting fed.

The group of hard working volunteers at St Thomas Church has been boosted by staff from Swansea Council who are now based there. Read more about the volunteers on Facebook.


Staff

Call to action

The council and unions have issued a joint call to arms to our magnificent staff. We know how hard people are working and the sacrifices they are making, but we need to keep going that extra mile during this crisis. Please visit www.swansea.gov.uk/jointlettertostaff for full details.

 

Social distancing at work

We're working hard to ensure we meet the Welsh Government's new law on social distancing

The law requires businesses and other bodies to allow two metres between employees. However, it is not an absolute ban on working closer as the Welsh Government realises that it would be impractical in the delivery of some essential services.

Council staff will be briefed by managers. Those who seek clarification on the new rules can ask their manager and there's more information on the advice page for staff.

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