“Councils across the country are leading local efforts to support communities through the coronavirus crisis and are helping government provide essential food parcels to vulnerable and isolated people on an unprecedented scale."
For the first time, all three stakeholder groups have agreed a joint national approach to the crisis. The fire service organisations say that the measures in the agreement reflect the scale of the national crisis and the urgency of the response required.
Under the agreement, firefighters will be able to:
Deliver essential items like food and medicines to vulnerable people
Drive ambulances and assist ambulance staff
Retrieve dead bodies, should the outbreak cause mass casualties
Firefighters will continue responding to core emergencies, such as fires and road traffic collisions
Responding to the announcement by government that councils have been asked to support rough sleepers and other vulnerable homeless into accommodation by the end of the week, Cllr James Jamieson, Chairman of the Local Government Association, said:
“Councils have been working hard to identify rough sleepers and homeless people, get them off the streets and into suitable accommodation and help protect them from the coronavirus.
“This will be a huge task given the shortage of accommodation available with many councils now affected by the recent closures of hotels and the difficulties some
Retired care workers being asked to return to work could help support those most at risk of the coronavirus outbreak and provide a much-needed boost to an already over-stretched social care workforce, say council leaders.
“Councils share the frustration of motorists about the state of our local roads and, as this survey shows, fixing our roads is a priority for them. Despite the financial pressures councils face, they continue to fix a pothole every 21 seconds."