Hull City Council leader Stephen Brady has reassured residents that plans are in place to respond to the challenges of coronavirus during “unprecedented times”.
Cllr Brady stressed during a Full Council meeting in this morning the importance of following Government advice to protect against the outbreak.
He said: “We are clearly living in unprecedented times and I cannot recall circumstances like the ones the Covid-19 outbreak has placed us in. Many of us and our residents are very worried, and everyone is concerned about our friends and families and apprehensive for the future.
“It is important we all heed central government advice and play our part in making sure we protect ourselves, our families and those who are most vulnerable in our city. And I know that this advice has changed and that it may well change again. This is because the situation itself is very fluid.
“Taking the very difficult actions requested of us now will help in easing the pressure on the health service, on vital council services and protect us all in the longer term, and that must remain the key priority for us all.”
A 10 point plan to tackle coronavirus was announced by Cllr Brady during the meeting.
He told the meeting that contingency plans are in place for all council services.
He said: “Whilst we don’t know yet the full impact of the virus in Hull, I want to reassure you that Hull City Council is coordinating services so that we can respond to a rapidly changing environment and it is important that we do our best to support these actions.
“Our planning doesn’t just take into account the differing needs in our communities but also our ability to deliver services as the situation itself develops. This type of planning requires very flexible forward planning that is able to adapt in an environment that will change in ways we may need to respond to very quickly. Our own staff are part of this community and plans have to include how this situation may impact on them.
“We have contingency plans in place for all our services and these have now been actioned to make sure that we continue to operate and serve people as effectively as we can.
“We are also working extremely closely through joint plans with our partners across the city: the Humber Local Resilience Forum, the Hull CCG, the NHS, the police and the fire service and our many partners and providers, so that we can coordinate our combined resources and focus them in the right place at the right time.
“While we aren’t badly affected at the moment, like all other organisations, we are planning now to deal with the expected impacts and there is no doubt that, as we move forward, our services will be affected.”
Tough decisions have already been made by the council, including the closure of several local authority-run facilities.
Cllr Brady warned that other services would follow in the coming days and weeks.
“We have already had to make some difficult decisions, such as closing the Hull New Theatre and Hull City Hall and, yesterday, Hull Training, I need to be clear that there will be other services we will have to stop or scale back.
“I am proud that, as they have before, our staff are stepping up to the mark once again with an incredible shared focus, dedication and commitment to serving our city but, if and when we are unable to continue to do certain things, we need you to bear with us and continue to be a key part of the solution.
“I give you my assurance that all the decisions we make will always be made in the best interests of our residents and especially our most vulnerable.”
“I’m incredibly proud to be part of our city and to be leader of Hull City Council. Historically, our city has faced very challenging times before but, by pulling together, we got through them.”
Residents can keep up to date on service changes and other actions on the council’s Twitter page @hullccnews, on Facebook at Hull City Council news, on www.hullccnews.co.uk and in local print and broadcast media.