Liverpool City Region COVID-19 Updates - 2020-09-04

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Liverpool City Region COVID-19 Updates
... and Important Emergency Notices ...

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This page last updated on 04 September 2020

Sign up for Kickstart, give youth a chance and boost your business

THE Governmentís ₤2bn Kickstart Scheme is aimed at creating hundreds of thousands of new, fully subsidised jobs for young people across the country; and local businesses are being urged to sign up and reap the rewards. Businesses keen to get involved and offer placements on the scheme are now able to bid for funding which will see the Government pay 100% of the age-relevant National Minimum Wage, National Insurance and pension contributions for 25 hours a week.

Minister for Employment Mims Davies MP said:- "Small and medium sized businesses once again thriving, is key to our economic recovery which is why Iím encouraging every single 1 to consider getting involved in our Kickstart Scheme as part of their next stage. We want to create as many opportunities for young people as possible and with representative bodies supporting SMEs to submit bids, they will be guided through the process so they can start recruiting Kickstarters. This innovative scheme is mutually beneficial for local employers, who get new access to an enormous pool of potential, and the young recruits will gain vital experience, confidence and a crucial boost to their career credentials."

British Chambers of Commerce Head of People Policy Jane Gratton said:- "The Kickstart Scheme will help firms create and support thousands of opportunities for young people, maintaining their access to the job market and driving the UKís economic recovery. Chambers of Commerce, rooted in local business communities, will be working hard to connect up employers and young people, so that every opportunity to use the Kickstart Scheme is taken."

Businesses of all sizes are encouraged to get involved; hereís a handy guide for small and medium sized businesses:-

Who can apply?

Any business, regardless of size, can apply for funding and the Government is encouraging as many businesses as possible to submit bids.

How many people can I take on?

There is no limit to the number of Kickstart places a business can offer through the scheme, and you can create just one Kickstart role if thatís what works for your business.

However all Kickstart roles must be new, quality and cannot be used to fill existing or planned vacancies.

What are the costs to the business?

Companies that are successful in securing funding will receive 100% of the relevant National Minimum Wage for 25 hours a week, plus associated employer National Insurance contributions and employer minimum automatic enrolment contributions.

₤1500 per person will be available to cover employment support as well as additional costs such as uniform expenses, setting up training and any admin fees.

How do I apply?

If you are recruiting more than 30 people as part of the Kickstart Scheme you can submit a bid directly online through:- Gov.UK.

If you are looking to recruit fewer than 30 people you apply through an intermediary.

Intermediaries can be other businesses, local authorities, trade bodies, Chambers of Commerce and charities.

You can find an intermediary in your area by speaking to your local jobcentre, or by looking online.

Once youíve provided your company name, contact details and location the DWP employer team will get in touch within 48 hours to connect you with your local representative.

Can I become an intermediary for my area?

Yes, businesses recruiting for fewer than 30 places are free to create their own consortia and you can find more guidance on how you can become a representative organisation online.

All intermediaries must have experience of managing partnership agreements with third parties and robust financial and governance processes to manage the application.

Organisations acting as intermediaries for employers will be paid ₤300 for each placement.

Why has it been designed this way?

The bid process has been designed to be as efficient as possible so businesses can start interviewing quickly and young people can begin their placements.

Businesses applying through a registered intermediary will be given help and guidance with their representative managing the bidding process on their behalf; making it less labour intensive for SME's.

Once successful, how do businesses recruit?

Young people will be enrolled on the Kickstart scheme by their jobcentre Work Coach, and then matched up with vacancies that are suitable for them. Kickstart applicants will then go through the companyís normal interview process.

Sefton Council urging tenants and landlords to get in touch if they need help and advice

ALTHOUGH the Government recently extended the Eviction Ban it brought in in response to the Coronavirus Pandemic until Sunday, 20 September 2020, Sefton Council's Homeless Prevention Service are keen to contact tenants and landlords who may be anticipating issues now.

By contacting the team at:- Homeless.Prevention@Sefton.Gov.UK or by calling:- 07966 698 065 or 07870 379586, private rented and social housing tenants can get support to help them maintain their tenancy. The Team can also provide assistance with moving on to more affordable, and suitable accommodation if required.

Landlords facing issues such as rent arrears and late or inconsistent rent payments or who have concerns about vulnerable tenants can also contact the team for support in resolving the situation.

Cllr Trish Hardy, Sefton Council's Cabinet Member for Communities and Housing said:- "We know that COVID-19 has had an impact on many people's circumstances and has had a negative effect on many households' incomes, which could make housing costs a problem. The sooner tenants facing problems contact us, the better the chance that we can work with them to find practical solutions that avoid conflicts, evictions and the costs of legal proceedings. And by working with landlords facing difficulties, we can also help them reach solutions without the legal costs and lost rent that can arise from disputes and evictions."

Sefton Council wants to hear from tenants who have received an eviction notice or have rent arrears, who are managing outstanding and current debts and who are trying to reduce their expenses or get the most from their income.

People having problems applying for Discretionary Housing Payments (DHPs) and with concerns about their own or family members' mental health, drug or alcohol issues affecting your tenancy should also contact the service.

Landlords who contact the team may be concerned about affordability issues due to a change in circumstances, anti-social behaviour, their tenant's mental health, addiction or other vulnerabilities that are affecting the tenancy.

Cllr Hardy added:- "There are a wide range of issues some of which are very difficult for any of us to face up to and talk about but our Homeless Prevention Service is there to make that initial conversation easier and then to find constructive ways to overcome the problems. Despite this last-minute and short-term hold on evictions for a month by the Government, I would urge any tenants who are worried to get in touch with the Team at:- Homeless.Prevention@Sefton.Gov.UK or on:- 07966 698 065 or 07870 379586, today."

Education Secretary has "zero credibility" says a Sefton MP

A Merseyside MP has questioned the credibility of Education Secretary Gavin Williamson following the exams and Schools reopening fiascos. Shadow Minister (International Trade) Bill Esterson MP said it was remarkable that Mr Williamson was still in post while his officials had accepted responsibility for the department's failure and resigned. The Head of Ofqual and the Permanent Secretary at the Department for Education both resigned, but Mr Williamson did not.

Mr Esterson, who is the Member of Parliament for Sefton Central, said the "last straw" was the release of guidance to Schools just days before the new term on the Friday evening of the August Bank Holiday weekend. And he said Schools were still waiting to find out what plans were in place for Schools affected by local lockdowns.

Mr Esterson said:- "Our Head Teachers and School leaders have worked tirelessly through lockdown and over the summer to make Schools safe for pupils' return. After the trauma of the exams fiasco, where thousands of students' grades were unfairly downgraded, the Department for Education then decided that the Friday night before a Bank Holiday weekend, just 5 days before the start of the new term, was an appropriate time to release updated guidance. It is the last straw and just demonstrates that Gavin Williamson has zero credibility among staff or parents. School leaders in my constituency are telling me they were horrified to receive this new guidance late at night before the Bank Holiday Weekend and that the guidance didn't even make clear what was new. Then this week we hear that Ofqual repeatedly warned the Minister that the algorithm for awarding exam grades would let some children and parents down, and that the Education Secretary cancelled the exams against Ofqual advice. In fact Ofqual warned Mr Williamson in March that the use of the algorithm was very much a last resort precisely because of the flaws it contained. It is incompetence on a grand scale, and it is remarkable that the Education Secretary is still in post. It appears that it is only the fact that Gavin Williamson is a close ally of the Prime Minister that saw him given the job of Education Secretary in the first place. Unfortunately, cronyism will take priority over competence and credibility with this Government."

Mr Esterson said he had been contacted by School leaders who told him that it was 10pm, on the Friday evening of the Bank Holiday Weekend that they received new guidance for Schools regarding safe opening.

Some said they had taken their families away for a late summer break and were totally unprepared to deal with the proposed changes.

Mr Esterson said:- "The Government has had months to consider how Schools can safely operate. The unions have repeatedly asked for timely guidance and have offered to work with the Government. So has the Labour Party opposition front bench. But these offers to work together have been ignored by Ministers and the end result is chaos and confusion. School Leaders tell me they had already written their protocols and risk assessments for reopening based on the previous guidance. They thought they were ready. Education Ministers showed a complete lack of understanding of how Schools work in changing when they did. How can 10pm on the Friday preceding a Bank Holiday Weekend be in any way an appropriate time to release a 28,000 word detailed guidance document?"

Mr Esterson continued:- "The guidance even carried a warning to Head Teachers about protecting Teacher wellbeing. It's a pity that Gavin Williamson and his colleagues didn't consider Teacher wellbeing in the way they drew up their plans. School leaders have had enough to do over the summer; along with all the usual work they have to put in ahead of any School year starting. I have written to the Education Secretary to say that any further guidance should be released in a way that is planned and timely and less likely to impact on the well being of School leaders. It should also be drawn up in collaboration with Schools and unions."

Bill Esterson said Schools should be issued with guidance immediately regarding what will happen when there are outbreaks of Covid-19 or where there is a local lockdown. He said:- "We still haven't seen the plan for how we will keep our Schools safe in the event of Covid outbreaks among students or during local lockdowns. How will the Government ensure that children's education is not damaged further? The whole approach of the Government to Schools during the pandemic has been shambolic. The Education Secretary has zero credibility with staff or parents. He has created confusion and undermined confidence at the very time everyone needs to believe it is safe to go back to School. It is remarkable that he has not been sacked by the Prime Minister, but if he is to stay in his job he must learn from his mistakes and work with those who know what they are doing in Schools to make sure Schools stay open and that children, staff and families are safe."

Total UK cases COVID-19 cases in and around Liverpool City Region

THE total  number of UK Coronavirus (COVID-19) infections that have been laboratory confirmed, within the UK, has risen by 1,940 cases and the total number now stand at 342,351, that includes tests carried out by commercial partners which are not included in the 4 National totals.

The number of COVID-19 associated UK fatalities added to the total, was sadly reported to be 10 according to the Department of Health. The total number of deaths of people who have had a positive test result confirmed by a Public Health or NHS laboratory is 41,537.

The number of COVID-19 patients currently in UK Hospitals:- 743. The current number of COVID-19 patients currently in mechanical ventilation beds in UK Hospitals:- 76. Daily number of COVID-19 patients admitted to UK Hospitals:- 124.

In England, there are a total of 295,594 confirmed cases. North West - total of 54,668 confirmed cases.

The number of laboratory confirmed cases within the Liverpool City Region are as follows:-

Liverpool, 2,939 confirmed cases.

Halton, 753 confirmed cases.

Knowsley, 1,095 confirmed cases.

Sefton, 1,730 confirmed cases.

St. Helens, 1,300 confirmed cases.

Wirral, 2,290 confirmed cases.

The number of laboratory confirmed cases within Local Authorities around the Liverpool City Region are as follows:-

Blackburn with Darwen, 1,902 confirmed cases.

Blackpool, 1,110 confirmed cases.

Bolton, 2,563 confirmed cases.

Bury, 1,637 confirmed cases.

Cheshire East, 2,426 confirmed cases.

Cheshire West and Chester, 2,173 confirmed cases.

Lancashire, 8,417 confirmed cases.

Manchester, 4,460 confirmed cases.

Oldham, 3,007 confirmed cases.

Preston, 1,480 confirmed cases.

Rochdale, 2,331 confirmed cases.

Salford, 1,904 confirmed cases.

Stockport, 2,014 confirmed cases.

Tameside, 2,005 confirmed cases.

Trafford, 1,733 confirmed cases.

Warrington, 1,453 confirmed cases

Wigan, 2,364 confirmed cases..

WARNING - Some areas within England which are currently in Lockdown or have Enhanced Restrictions

LOCKDOWN restrictions have been eased in:- Stockport, Burnley, Hyndburn, parts of Bradford, excluding Bradford City and Keighley Town, parts of Calderdale, excluding:- Halifax, and parts of Kirklees, excluding:- Dewsbury and Batley.

According to Government rules, people living in these areas can now:-

Socialise in groups of up to 2 households indoors or in private gardens

Stay overnight at somebody else's home but must try to social distance

Book close contact services such as facials and brow or eyelash treatments

Visit bowling alleys, roller rinks, soft play centres and casinos

Measures were imposed at the end of July amid a rise in cases.

Stockport has joined Wigan in being allowed to have 2 households socialise indoors.

But in:- Bolton, Trafford, Manchester, Salford, Rochdale, Bury and Tameside it is still banned. In Oldham people are advised not to meet up with other households outdoors as well.

Daily reported COVID deaths are now measured across the UK as deaths that occurred within 28 days of the 1st laboratory confirmed positive COVID test.  

Daily and cumulative numbers of COVID-19 patients admitted to Hospital. Data are not updated every day by all 4 nations and the figures are not comparable as Wales include suspected COVID-19 patients while the other nations include only confirmed cases.

Previous 24hr Data


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