Liverpool City Region COVID-19 Updates - 2020-08-06

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

YOU can get daily major and interesting news updates for the Liverpool City Region on our free email news service, via signing up on:- Formby Reporter.  If you have any updates to send in or any views on the posts on here, please email us to:- News24@SouthportReporter.Com.

This page last updated on 6 August 2020

Southport Testing Centre

A Spokesperson for Sefton Council said:- "The location of the testing centre has always been Southport Town Hall and this remains the case. Sefton Council has worked hard with Deloitte to amend the site plans to change the entrance to the Town Hall from the One Stop Shop to Corporation Street following visits to the traders on Friday, over the weekend and on Monday to listen to their concerns. However, it is important that there is no confusion for users on the location, the testing centre will still be in Southport Town Hall, as was always planned. However access to the site will now be via the Corporation Street entrance rather than Cambridge Arcade. Although there will be a minor delay to opening of the testing centre due to these additional works required, this remains the best and most trusted location for a walk-in centre, within 30 minutes' walk for as many of Southport's residents as possible; particularly for those without vehicular access. Testing is vital to response, recovery, and the continued protection of lives and livelihoods. A semi permanent testing centre in Southport Town Centre will be critical to the wellbeing of all residents, and in turn to the local economy."

Charity shops on the North West 'more important to society' than ever

A survey commissioned  by the British Heart Foundation shows shoppers in the North West expected to shop 2nd hand to save money and support those in need, following pandemic. Charity shops could be vital to the recovery from the Coronavirus pandemic by helping people save money, shop sustainably and fund charitable services, according to a new survey.  The survey showed that 30% of adults in the North West feel that charity shops are more important to society following Covid-19, while just under four in ten (36%) agree that being sustainable and thinking about the environment when they shop is more important than before.

Of those who think charity shops will be more important for society in the North West:-

► 72% say it's because charity shops provide affordable items to those with financial concerns.

► 69% say it's because they raise funds for charitable causes at a time many of these causes are in high demand.

► 59% say charity shops are vital because they prevent items from being thrown away.

► 43% respondents say they provide jobs and volunteering opportunities in community at a time the UK is facing recession.

Last year alone, thanks to the generosity donations to our shops the BHF helped re-use an incredible 71,000 tonnes of items and prevented 135,000 tonnes of carbon dioxide emissions from being released into the atmosphere. The BHF say the Covid-19 crisis has highlighted the benefits charity shops bring to the economy and consumers, from saving people money, to preventing items going to waste and funding causes that have given vital support to people during this time. The charity hopes its shops will be a first stop for those wanting to declutter and donate as people are more conscious of these benefits than ever.

Allison Swaine Hughes, Retail Director at the British Heart Foundation, said:- "This pandemic has been devastating for so many of us and the reopening of charity shops is going to be vital for millions as we look to recover. Charity shops provide high quality items at affordable prices, power charitable services that have never been more in demand, re-use thousands of tonnes of items and provide a community space for so many volunteers and customers. Every pound raised in our shops helps us to support the 930,000 people in the North West living with heart and circulatory diseases, many of whom are at increased risk from Covid-19. Shopping at the BHF will help us, help them."

At the end of March, the BHF temporarily closed its 750 nationwide shops in order to protect staff, volunteers and customers. The charity has since revealed that its funding budget to support research into heart and circulatory diseases may be reduced by ₤50 million this year and needs the public support more than ever to maintain progress. Just ₤16 worth of your donations can support an early career scientist in carrying out an hour's research and ₤25 gives a researcher an hour's access to equipment. If your donations raised ₤100, this would fund a DNA extraction kit to identify genes linked to heart and circulatory diseases. To find your local BHF shop visit: BHF.Org.UK.

Warning issued to those heading the the beaches over Covid-19 Pandemic

PEOPLE need to take all necessary health precautions as Britain looks set to bask in a heat wave and keep an eye on vulnerable or elderly family and friends; while maintaining social distancing; who are most at risk if they catch Coronavirus. With good weather forecast, it is also likely that many members of the public will travel to beaches in England. The "rush to the sun" following easing of lockdown restrictions in recent weeks has become a serious challenge for Councils responsible for beach safety. The Local Government Association is calling for Government to set out clear guidance for the public about visiting beaches and for fast track Government funding to help fund beach patrols, additional toilets and prominent signage, to improve safety at beach beauty spots. People should think carefully before travelling to beaches and to get in the habit of checking they are open and safe to visit. The LGA said Councils have adapted their heat wave plans in keeping with COVID-19 advice.  As temperatures soar over the next few days, the LGA said social workers, community wardens and maintenance staff will be on high alert, identifying and looking out for those who might be struggling, while making sure social distancing measures are maintained. They are also urging people to call their local Council if they believe anyone needing help is being missed out. Older people and those suffering from heart and respiratory problems are most at risk.  Cllr Richard Kemp, Vice Chair of the LGA's Community Wellbeing Board, said:- "No 1 is immune to the power of the sun. Hot weather advice might seem common sense, but effective action, taken early, can reduce the health impacts of exposure to excessive heat. Looking around at how our older neighbours are coping takes no effort, but could be crucial in making sure they are also able to make the best of the summer. People will understandably want to enjoy the sunshine. However, when large numbers of people head to the coast and tourist spots there is inevitably a risk of overcrowding and an increase in the rate at which COVID-19 could be transmitted. Lives depend on all of us taking personal responsibility for our actions to avoid a resurgence of this deadly virus that puts further lives at risk."

Hot weather tips:-

► Look out for others, especially older people, young children and babies and those with underlying health conditions.

► Close curtains on rooms that face the sun to keep indoor spaces cooler and remember it may be cooler outdoors than indoors.

► Drink plenty of water and take water with you, if you are travelling.

► Never leave anyone in a closed, parked vehicle, especially infants, young children or animals.

► Try to keep out of the sun between 11am and 3pm.

► Walk in the shade, apply sunscreen and wear a hat, if you have to go out in the heat.

► Avoid physical exertion in the hottest parts of the day.

► Wear light, loose fitting cotton clothes.

Did you know? Following the 2003 heat wave in which more than 2,000 people in England died due to the extreme temperatures, the country has developed an annual heat wave plan with local authorities, health professionals and the emergency services working together to help keep people safe!

LGA Responds to the UK Government's 'Planning for the Future' proposal

RESPONDING to the Government's ‘Planning for the Future' proposals to overhaul the planning system, Cllr James Jamieson, Chairman of the Local Government Association, said:- "Councils are committed to ensuring new homes are built and communities have quality places to live. It is vital that these are delivered through a locally led planning system which gives communities the power to ensure new developments are of a high standard, built in the right places, and include affordable homes. We also need to ensure that new homes are supported by new funding for community infrastructure such as schools, playgrounds and roads. 9 in 10 applications are approved by Councils with more than a million homes given planning permission over the last decade yet to be built. The system needs to ensure planning permissions are built. Any loss of local control over developments would be a concern. It would deprive communities of the ability to define the area they live in and know best and risk giving developers the freedom to ride roughshod over local areas. We will need to look properly at these proposals in detail, but Councils share the aspiration of improving the current planning system to provide greater certainty for communities, encourage brownfield development , to deliver better infrastructure and increase local involvement.  It is vital that Government fully engages with and takes advantage of the expertise in local Government to ensure that their aspirations of an improved system works in practice. We look forward to responding to this consultation in detail and working with Government to ensure any reforms improve the system and protect the rights of communities to shape the areas they live in. If we are to truly fix our chronic housing shortage, Councils need the tools, powers and flexibilities to plan for and deliver the quality homes and places communities need."

Sefton Council issues COVID-19 Action Cards to guide business owners and managers

SEFTON Council is reminding the Borough's businesses that Action Cards containing information about how to report and manage a potential COVID-19 outbreak are now available online. The Action Cards guide business owners and managers through the three steps of how to Identify, Report and Respond and are specific to each type of business or location. They have been designed to be printed or downloaded for businesses and organisations to keep on-hand and can be found at. Advice about identifying a COVID-19 outbreak, reporting it and working with the local Health Protection Team to manage the response is included in the Action Cards, which can be found on:- Sefton.Gov.UK.

Developed by the NHS Test and Trace service, the online guides provide specific advice for a wide range of business and venue types. These includes:- entertainment venues, tourist attractions and churches, shops hairdressers, pubs and restaurants and residential locations, such as Hotels and Hostels. Cllr Marion Atkinson, Sefton Council's Cabinet Member for Regeneration and Skills said:- "I have been pleased to see businesses across the Borough being able to re-open and start to get back on their feet but I know it is not easy for them to know just how to implement the complicated but vital guidelines designed to keep employees and customers safe or what to do if they suspect an outbreak. These Action Cards which are available on the Council's website are tailored to meet the circumstances of a wide range of businesses and organisations and provide step-by-step instructions that explain where to get help and support to contain an outbreak should one occur."

The Action cards also contain general guidelines about prevent the spread of COVID-19, what information a local Health Protection Team may require. They also suggest the types of measures that may have to be put in place, such as enhanced hygiene, hand washing and cleaning regimes, the use of personal protective equipment (PPE), rapid testing and tracing and the reduced use of shared spaces. Cllr Ian Moncur, Sefton Council's Cabinet Member for Health and Wellbeing said:-
"Although businesses and other locations are opening up again, Coronavirus is still very much with us and it is important that they report any signs of an outbreak as soon as possible and work with local health teams to prevent it spreading and endangering vulnerable members of the community. These Action Cards are a useful tool to help them do that."

Time to revive the rural economy

ON 6 August 2020, the UK Government published its White Paper:- 'Planning for the Future.' and the CLA Director of External Affairs Jonathan Roberts has responded with the following this announcement:- "Everyone knows the planning system has been in need of overhaul for many years. And whilst there are some positive developments, at present the Planning White Paper represents a missed opportunity for the countryside. Of course, we should protect vital environmental assets, but the countryside is not a museum and by not including it in its ‘growth’ category, Government is ignoring the huge economic potential of the rural economy. We know many individuals and businesses are wanting to escape to the countryside. At the same time, we have many farmers desperate to convert disused buildings into modern office space, but they are being restricted from doing so by a planning system that appears designed to hold the economy back. With high levels of rural poverty, and village schools, pubs and shops closing, now is the time to revive the rural economy by facilitating job creation and growth. The Planning White Paper proposes little that would achieve that."

Total UK cases COVID-19 cases

THE total UK daily number of lab-confirmed positive test results:- 950. The total overall UK lab-confirmed positive test results:- 308,134. Daily number of COVID-19 associated UK fatalities added to the total, was sadly reported to be:- 49, with the total number of deaths of people who have had a positive test result now standing at:- 46,413. The number of COVID-19 patients currently in UK Hospitals:- 1,118. The current number of COVID-19 patients currently in mechanical ventilation beds in UK Hospitals:- 73. Daily number of COVID-19 patients admitted to UK Hospitals:- 142. Due to new UK Government system of reporting we are having to sort out a new system to bring you the local area results, for the Liverpool City Region and surrounding areas.

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