Today was the first day back in Parliament. I should not be here. It is dangerous, contributes to another potential peak of Covid-19 and disenfranchises shielding MPs. The voting system today would have been laughable if it wasn’t so serious. Online voting works. Jacob Reece Mogg should be ashamed of what has happened today.
Easing of lockdown
The Government have introduced several new measures to ease lockdown. To say I am uncomfortable at the pace of this would be an understatement. The Government have not thus far instilled confidence that they are getting this right. That said, it has never been more important to adhere to advice and to ensure you are staying at home as much as possible and being as safe as possible. Here are some links below that will help to clarify the new rules
On meeting people outside – https://www.gov.uk/…/pm-six-people-can-meet-outside-under-n…
On sport and exercise: https://www.gov.uk/…/groups-of-up-to-six-from-different-hou…
For shielders and those extremely vulnerable: https://www.gov.uk/…/prime-minister-hails-resilience-of-shi…
If you are concerned please speak to your doctor or clinical advisor on these matters.
The chancellor has also produced new advice and support for the self-employed and those currently furloughed: https://www.gov.uk/…/chancellor-extends-self-employment-sup…
Previous advice to follow: The Government has also provided guidance on how to stay safe should you leave your home – you can read this here: https://www.gov.uk/…/publica…/staying-safe-outside-your-home
For all further information including the Government’s new ‘Stay Alert’ messaging: https://www.gov.uk/coronavirus
Other useful information:
COVID-19 and claiming benefits: https://www.understandinguniversalcredit.gov.uk/coronavirus/
NHS website for the latest health advice: https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/coronavirus-covid-19/
The latest travel advice: https://www.gov.uk/guidance/travel-advice-novel-coronavirus
Waste Complaints Many people have asked about litterbins, so here is an update. When the Government announced lock-down LCC immediately took the step to suspend emptying of litter bins. With over 4,000 bins, it was not practical nor a good use of limited resources to tape up every bin. LCC did try and do some though, on high streets. This was a bit rough and ready and soon many of those taping ups came loose or were part removed by the public. LCC relied on people getting the message through social media and press they shouldn’t use litterbins.This had some success but many bins still got used – often people stuffing them full of dog-poo bags even when there was no bin liner in. We needed to encourage everyone to take greater personal responsibility for their rubbish. LCC then added a sticker to every litter bin to make clear not to use them and asking people to take their litter home with them. Unfortunately, not everyone did this of course. So we LCC emptied bins that become full and a potential nuisance for nearby residents as often as they could.
Litterbin reopening As we are now in “step 1” of the Government’s road-map out of “lockdown”, the public are leaving their homes more and for more time. The Government has permitted unlimited exercise and household picnics in parks. More shops and businesses are open. Ice cream vans can operate! So LCC are now removing all covering/taping up of litter bins.LCC will operate an increased team of litter bin crews citywide that will focus on the known streets where the litter bins are being filled. The message to the public is please take your litter home with you if at all possible, but LCC will empty bins as required. Please refer any “hotspot”/problem litter bins to your Cleaner Neighbourhood Team contact for a response.
Update on the X84 and X85 Bus service
I recieved the below from First Bus’ Head of External Communications this morning.
“This morning I’d like to provide you with an update in line with changes we’ve announced this week to a number of services. The changes are based on increases to many services following confirmation of Government support in providing more capacity to help manage social distancing. This will help the needs of key workers and others making essential journeys. The revised timetables are launched in line with a number of industry-leading measures to help ensure that government guidelines are observed across our fleet and that we offer clean, safe, socially-distanced space for passengers and our employees. These range from innovative capacity tracking technology to seat signage that encourages customers to adopt appropriate distancing on board.The changes include the reintroduction of the X85 (via Pool) and alongside the X84, form a 20 minute service departing Leeds towards Ilkley. There is now one X84 to Ilkley, one X84 to Otley and one X85 to Otley. These also provide a 20 minute combined service from Otley to Leeds. In addition both services return to Leeds Bus Station and both services will operate non-stop from Leeds to Weetwood Police Station in both directions. We believe that this should assist with capacity as customers still have the option of services 1, 6, 27 & 28 28 providing a coordinated 14 buses per hour through Headingley. We will review the X84/X85 limited stop arrangements over the longer term and would welcome feedback.Of course Government guidance is still to avoid public transport so we continue to urge customers to consider if they need to use the bus to travel, and if so, to avoid where possible typically busier times of the day. As travel advice develops, we will look at further service changes.If you require any further information please do let me know.”