Emergancy COVID-19 Notices for the Liverpool City Region - 2020-04-30

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AS This page is to place quick update important notices that are being sent to us from Government and other organisations over the Coronavirus Emergency affecting our country (UK)...  Please remember that the information changes quickly, so always check to see what time and when the last post was made.  We will update as and when we can...  Users of our Formby Reporter's Free Email Service will get most updates 1st and then they will be added on here as soon as we can...  If you have any updates to send in or any views on the posts on here, please email us to:- News24@SouthportReporter.Com.

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This page last updated on 30 April 2020

Businesses issue a warning as TUC uses key workers to call for minimum wage to ₤10 an hour for everyone

TRADE Unionists around the country are marking May Day, also known as:- 'International Workers' Day,' with an online #ThankAWorker action, expressing gratitude to key workers who have made a difference to them during lockdown. But the TUC believes that, as well as thanking workers, Ministers must do more to improve their pay and conditions. It sounds good that people could be paid more, but many small businesses who are facing going under say the calls by the TUC to push up minimum wage to ₤10 an hour for everyone is a step to far. According to the TUC in a report they have published on Friday, 1 May 2020, they say that 4 in 10 key workers in the North West, over 450,000 people, are paid less than ₤10 an hour. But many small businesses point out that if they pay more, it will mean mass closures as already many are struggling to stay open, and that was before the Coronavirus pandemic.

In the report published by the TUC, it reveals that nationally:-

• Nearly 4 in 10 key workers, that is an estimated 3.7 million people, are paid less than ₤10 an hour, compared to 3 in 10 non-key workers.

• Women are much more likely than men to be key workers and, when they are, are much more likely to be on low pay. Of an estimated 9.8 million key workers, nearly are women. And 2.5 million women key workers earn less than ₤10 an hour.

• In social care, 7 in 10 workers earn less than ₤10 an hour.

The TUC went on to say that:- "Many key workers are also trapped in insecure work, without guaranteed hours and often missing out on basic rights like sick pay. For example, 1 in 4 workers in adult social care, 1 of the sectors hit hardest by the virus, are on zero hours contracts, which mean their hours of work and pay packets, can vary significantly."

In recognition of the contribution of key workers during this period, the TUC is calling on Government to:-

"1. Increase the minimum wage to ₤10 an hour for everyone now.

2. Deliver fair pay rises for our key workers and rewards for workers across the economy that restore what they've lost through 10 years of cuts and slow growth.

3. Ban zero-hours contracts and stamp out false self employment.

4. Increase sick pay to the real living wage and make sure everyone can get it from day 1.

5. Bring outsourced workers like cleaners in the NHS back into the public sector on public sector terms and conditions."

All sounds good, but as a small shop owner, who doesn't want to be named, as they fear that it would upset their customers said:- "Yes, we would love to pay more, but in reality, we are only a very small family run shop, but paying more for staff would push us in to bankruptcy. We fully agree that zero-hours contracts should be made illegal. They are bad the call for more money to paid out when many small businesses, who are trying to do their best for employees, just when we can't afford it is a step to far. Many small business owners, like us, pay staff more than we take home and Trade Unions only seem to look at the big businesses and not the bigger picture. If we close, 3 staff members will loose their jobs. We are just hanging on in as it is. Small businesses are already closing even before lockdown, due to pay rises and other escalating costs. Even businesses like ours, that provide essential goods and services over the lockdown is struggling. We get no help from banks or Government, no mater what they say in public. When will Trade Unions pick up on this and push to support local shops and businesses, who pay taxes and keep the many in the local community, and not pushing it into the pockets of international companies, before calling on wage increases? Our staffs are doing an amazing job and they know we are doing our best, but realistically, we just can't afford to pay any more. Also, will they call for London weighting be removed if all the UK gets the same minimum wage? I think not..."

TUC Regional Secretary Jay McKenna said:- "Everyone who's kept Britain going through this pandemic deserves a pay rise. Frontline workers are putting their own health on the line to look after the rest of us. They're caring for the sick and vulnerable, getting us to work, keeping our shelves stocked and our vital services running. Now it's time for ministers to give key workers a proper thank you. And that means getting money into their pockets now. The Government must give all key workers the pay, conditions and respect they deserve. That's how to really thank the people who got us through this crisis."

What do you, our readers think about this? Should there be more help to allow small businesses to pay more, like Tax Credits where promoted as.

NHSBT reassures Liverpool blood and platelet donors over appointment changes to enable COVID-19 trial

NHS Blood and Transplant is reassuring blood and platelet donors in Liverpool that they should not be concerned if their appointment is cancelled over the next few weeks.  NHS Blood and Transplant is beginning to collect convalescent plasma from people who have recovered from COVID-19 to support a national clinical trial. To free up appointments in donor centres, some blood and platelet donation appointments in Liverpool are being cancelled and rescheduled.  Donors can be assured that blood and platelet stocks are good and there will be no impact on supplies. The fantastic response of our donors during the Coronavirus pandemic means blood and platelet stocks are currently above average. Freeing up appointments will enable more donations that could save the lives of critically ill COVID-19 patients. Since the outbreak, we have seen drop in demand for blood and platelet, as Hospitals cancel non-urgent surgery, such as hip operations. This means there is enough capacity to change blood and platelet donation appointments into plasma donation appointments.

An NHS Blood and Transplant spokesperson said:- "We are still collecting blood and platelet in Liverpool so please keep making appointments to donate. Donation saves lives. This new trial is part of the national research effort against the Coronavirus and we hope people understand if we make any changes to your appointment. If your appointment is cancelled until another day it means we have good blood and platelet stocks, and the appointment time can be used for someone to donate plasma to a seriously ill COVID-19 patient."

The plasma trial will investigate whether transfusions of antibody rich plasma from people who have recovered could help people who are still unwell. Plasma will be mainly collected in selected cities with blood donor centres.

"We would encourage any blood and platelet donors who have had their appointment cancelled to re-book an appointment for a future date at by calling:- 0300 123 23 23, visiting:- www.Blood.Co.UK or using the NHSGiveBlood app."
commented the NHS Blood and Transplant spokesperson.

Letter to the Editor:- "An Open Letter To The People of the Liverpool City Region."

"WHEN we were hit by this appalling pandemic our everyday lives changed overnight. We came home from work, went to bed and woke up to a different world. All we now have is the neighbourhood we live in. Eerily quiet with nothing to break the silence but the birds singing. We have adapted quickly and now use our one piece of daily exercise to walk to the local shop, ride our bikes with our kids through the traffic free streets or jog around our lovely parks. So what happens when we have beaten this pandemic? I will hug my family and friends. I will go to the pub. I will also miss walking through the peaceful clean air in my neighbourhood. Is it inevitable that as businesses and workplaces reopen we must once more fill our roads with pollution and make going for a walk a hazardous occupation? If we just continue our 'business as usual' before lockdown then we will do an injustice to many of those vulnerable people who have had to self isolate. Our air during 'normal' times is toxic. It causes and increases asthma and other respiratory problems. Exactly the health issues that make a person high risk to Covid-19. We have come together in an amazing way to save thousands more lives. Yet for many years our everyday choices have added to another invisible killer. Air pollution leads to the early deaths of 40,000 people a year in the UK not to mention nearly 30,000 killed or seriously injured on the roads. Self isolation has been very hard for the mental wellbeing of lots of us and yet dangerous, noisy roads have created traumatic mental isolation for many people for decades. I find it bewilderingly puzzling that we can change the way we live in a heartbeat to help save lives and yet go on adding to the cause of so many other deaths and health problems every day. Electric cars are not the easy fix. They still need energy. They still pollute and they still make roads feel unsafe. I believe that now is the moment reflect. To change direction. Can we once more have a vibrant economy across our Region with bustling shops and bars and quiet, clean and safe neighbourhoods? Is it possible or just a pipe dream? I know it is possible. I have visited Waltham Forest where the community came together a few years ago to create 'Quiet Neighbourhoods' where only people who live there would want to drive there. It's easier to walk or ride to the shops. People wander down the middle of the road pushing prams and chatting. The local High Street didn't die when they banned all traffic except the local bus. It flourished. I took the train to the City of Ghent In Belgium. In just 1 weekend they had done the same thing across an entire City. The suburbs are now quiet and the booming City Centre belongs to people. Not pipe dreams. Real places. Real Answers. 1 thing this terrible disease has shown is that we can change dramatically if we want. I urge everyone; businesses, communities and individuals to come together behind the growing political commitment. Let's have a healthy, quiet revolution across the Liverpool City Region. Let's keep walking, keep riding. Let's walk up the middle of the street, listening to the birdsong on the way to the pub." Yours, Simon O'Brien, Cycling and Walking Commissioner.

Total UK cases COVID-19 cases - update for Liverpool City Region and surroundings

AS the speculation grows on when will we come out of lockdown and how, the total number of UK lab-confirmed Covid-19 cases now stands at 171,253, confirmed by a Public Health or NHS laboratory. The rise of 6,032 to the national number includes tests carried out by commercial partners which are not included in the 4 National (England, Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland.) Sadly, COVID-19 infection fatalities have again risen by 674, with the overall number now at 26,771. In England, the number of confirmed cases now stands at 118,343. In the North West, 18,523 confirmed cases have been reported. Current Hospital Laboratory confirmed cases within the following Local Authorities, in and around the Liverpool City Region are as follows:-

► Liverpool, 1,392 confirmed cases.

► Sefton, 789 confirmed cases.

► Wirral, 990 confirmed cases.

► St. Helens, 634 confirmed cases.

► Halton, 312 confirmed cases.

► Lancashire, 2,736 confirmed cases.

► Cheshire West and Chester, 777 confirmed cases.

► Cheshire East, 851 confirmed cases.

► Manchester, 1,060 confirmed cases.

► Stockport, 808 confirmed cases.

► Trafford, 584 confirmed cases.

► Wigan, 642 confirmed cases.

► Bolton, 739 confirmed cases.

► Rochdale, 434 confirmed cases.

► Bury, 457 confirmed cases.

► Tameside, 451 confirmed cases.

► Oldham, 594 confirmed cases.

► Blackburn with Darwen, 306 confirmed cases.

These stats are according to Public Health England as of 30/04/2020. Last updated 6.04pm GMT. UK total includes cases detected through:- "Pillar 2" testing (tests carried out by commercial partners) and therefore does not equate to the sum of the 4 countries' counts, which only include:- "Pillar 1" (tests carried out by NHS / PHE / Devolved Administration Labs).

UK Government Coronavirus Press Conference on 30 April 2020 & UK .Gov Info-Video


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