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Coronavirus update Thursday 26th March

Leeds Currently has 53 confirmed cases of Coronavirus. As is the case with everywhere, we are expecting exponential growth over the next few weeks. It is also important to understand that there is a severe lack of testing and that we just do not know the real number of those infected. We also do not know how many people currently carry the virus but are not showing symptoms. Please make sure that you stay at home only leaving the house for the four approved purposes

Leeds City Council number for vulnerable people

If you feel particularly vulnerable to coronavirus and you do not have immediate support from friends or family, there is a dedicated hotline for you please call 0113 378 1877


I am in contact with police regularly regarding enforcement of the new social distancing measures. There are difficulties with resources, and they are still trying to access guidance from the Government. I am pleased to report that they have been out and about in our communities and doing their best to enforce social distancing.

I am also hearing several reports of workplaces who are still asking staff to come into the office even when unnecessary. The guidance from the Government is unclear but I would urge all employers to use common sense and adhere to the core principles behind social distancing.

I have been working with Hilary Benn MP to ensure that the large telecoms companies such as Capita are not asking staff to come into the office. As well as being in touch directly, we have met with Leeds City Council and West Yorkshire police to look at enforcement methods. I also lead a letter to the Prime Minister with 15 other MPs to urge the Government to be clearer in their guidance and definitions of who is and who is not a ‘key worker.’


Leeds North & West foodbank have closed Bramley but all other sites are open. We are working with them to find new sites and match volunteers to ensure that the service is there for people at the time of greatest need.

Infant Feeding

We have received a useful advice sheet from Unicef that provides some clear guidance for families concerned about feeding their infant. Please see UNICEF Factsheet.


It appears that a number of scam emails are circulating stating:  “if your child’s school is closed and your child is entitled to free school meals; then to send your bank details to the school and they will help you with funding while schools are closed.” The links are fake and vulnerable families may  be giving their bank details online. Please be careful and don’t share bank details with anyone.

Office of Alex Sobel MP

Our office is available for those who need us. Please bear in mind that we are receiving a very high volume of calls and enquiries at the moment and we are prioritising our service according to the greatest need.

Remember… Stay safe and stick to official advice and information.


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