Coronavirus Update (17th July 2020)


Our fortnightly COVID-19 update for the 17th July includes:

  1. Haringey & London Response Update
    1. Haringey Council to publish weekly COVID-19 figures
    2. Free School Meals - Apply Now
    3. Good mental health
    4. Update on Lidos and Leisure Centres
    5. Update on Libraries
    6. Update on Sports Courts
    7. Update on playgrounds, outdoor gyms & paddling pools
    8. Holiday Fun in Haringey
    9. Warning for businesses to follow Covid-19 guidelines
    10. Electric Vehicle Charging Points
    11. Haringey Book of Rememberance launched
    12. Tesco Bags of Help COVID-19 Communities Fund
    13. Local Food Banks still require urgent donations
    14. Volunteering opportunities for local residents
    15. Telephone befriending service
  2. Our Haringey Giving appeal
  3. How you can contact us
  4. National Response Update
    1. Face masks and coverings to be compulsary in shops from 24 July
    2. Changes to lockdown - from 11 July
    3. Shielding to be paused from 1st August
    4. Government jobs package announcement
    5. Plans announced for return to full-time education
    6. Self-isolating restrictions after overseas travel - update
    7. FCO travel advice and your stay abroad
    8. Driving lessons, theory tests and driving tests to restart

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1. HARINGEY & LONDON RESPONSE UPDATE


1.1 Haringey Council to publish weekly COVID-19 figures

In our last issue we provided Haringey's response dismissing media reports that Haringey was suffering a second spike in COVID-19 cases.
 

In order to keep the community and local services updated with the number of coronavirus cases in the borough, the council will publish a COVID-19 Weekly Briefing on the website – view the first one here.

These briefings will sit beside the council’s Local Outbreak Management Plan, which outlines how the council will work with agencies and other parts of the public health system to prevent and manage local outbreaks of COVID-19. The plan also seeks to understand the wider impact of COVID-19 on local communities.


1.2 Free School Meals - Apply Now
 

If you believe your child or children may be eligible to receive Free School Meals, please register them for that provision in order to receive support from the Government’s COVID Summer Food Fund.

The Fund will enable eligible pupils to be supported over the summer holidays, with a £90 voucher distributed by their schools to carers/parents to cover the six-week period.

Where your school’s summer holiday lasts for seven full weeks – as opposed to six – you can increase the voucher amount by £15 per child to £105.

Participating supermarkets where your vouchers will be accepted are as follows:

  • Aldi
  • Asda
  • Company Shop Group
  • Iceland, including The Food Warehouse Stores
  • M&S
  • McColl’s
  • Morrisons
  • Sainsbury’s
  • Tesco
  • Waitrose

Families will need to present in store either:

  • A paper copy of the voucher
  • The voucher on a smartphone or tablet

The vouchers do not have to be spent in full/one transaction, but must be spent on food.

For further information, visit the Gov.uk website.


1.3 Good mental health

As restrictions continue to ease, it is still important that we look after our mental wellbeing. It is important to stay connected to others, look after our bodies and keep our minds occupied.

Every Mind Matters has some useful tips to help improve your mental health and wellbeing during the coronavirus outbreak.

Find out how to look after your mental health.

There is also “help to stay positive” and wellbeing guidance on Haringey's website.



1.4 Update on Lidos and Leisure Centres

From today, Park Road Lido is scheduled to reopen with the following measures:
  • Adult lane swimming only – no sunbathing. All swims pre-booked and paid for online.
  • 60-minute sessions (50-minute swim)
  • No changing facilities – visitors are asked to come “beach ready”
  • Hot showers will be available (reduced number)
  • Swimmers are advised not to queue until just before their allocated time
  • Swimmers will be asked not to linger and to leave as soon as they have changed
Please ensure to follow social distancing guidance and be respectful of those around you.

Please visit the Park Road Pools and Fitness website for full details and to book.

Other centres and services will not be reopening just yet, but Fusion Leisure are working on plans for a phased reopening of their centres in Haringey. When they do reopen, there will be a number of temporary changes to the way they operate to ensure they are Covid-secure. We will share information as soon as it is available.


1.5 Update on Libraries

Libraries will not be reopening in full just yet as Haringey is considering how to safely resume the service, and it's estimated it will be some time before all facilities are restored to usual order. So far only Wood Green, St Ann's and Muswell Hill Libraries are open.
 
Wood Green Library reopened this week, 10am to 4pm, Monday – Saturday for the following services only:
  • Drop Boxes – users can return books in a designed ‘drop box’ situated just inside the library.
  • Click and collect – collection of books that have been pre-ordered online or by phone
  • Grab & Go – grab a self-selection of books by customers but with no provision to sit or stay to browse
Muswell Hill and St Ann’s Libraries both partially opened last week and will continue with the opening hours of 10.30am to 2.30pm, Monday to Saturday.

Both libraries will offer Drop Boxes, Click and Collect, Grab & Go as well as up to one hour of computer use. Please note that the number of computers available will be limited.

We will provide further updates as more library services reopen.

 


1.6 Update on Sports Courts

All council-run ball courts and skate parks in our green open spaces have now been reopened.

Facilities at Ducketts Common (ball courts – 12noon-10pm), Finsbury Park (ball courts and skate park – 12noon-8pm) and Lordship Rec (ball courts and skate park – 2pm-8pm) will all have supervised opening times.

You will still need to pre-book a slot online to play basketball (external link) or tennis (external link) in Finsbury Park. 

Pre-booking online is also required if you wish to play tennis at Albert Road Recreation Ground (external link) or Bruce Castle Park (external link).


1.7 Update on playgrounds, outdoor gyms & paddling pools

Reopening of playgrounds and outdoor gyms will be phased between the 20th to the 31st of July, with 2mts distancing and hand sanitising in place.

Outdoor paddling pools remain closed for now, but we will update you further as soon as we know more of the reopening schedule



1.8 Holiday Fun in Haringey

Haringey Council have published their activity booklet for the Summer holidays. Due to the ongoing pandemic, many of events are taking place in parks and open spaces.

Any late additions to the programme will be added to the council's What's On calendar.

To find out more about Holiday Fun in Haringey click here.



1.9 Warning for businesses to follow Covid-19 guidelines
 

A number of pubs and hairdressers/barbers have now been able to open their doors to the public and make the necessary changes to make their premises Covid-secure.

However, the council have reported that a minority of barbers still need to be advised on the requirements that need to be met including the use of PPE and protecting their customers.

It is crucial that we contain the spread of the coronavirus and avoid a second wave taking place that will force stricter lockdown measures to come back into place.

Council enforcement officers are out every day assessing businesses throughout the borough to ensure they are following the correct guidelines.

For all the information you need on the new guidelines and working safely please go to the government website.



1.10 Electric Vehicle Charging Points

With restrictions on public transport, many residents are considering alternative modes of transport such as walking and cycling. At the same time, many are considering changing their vehicles to electric vehicles, due to environmental concerns, but are worried about the ability to charge any future vehicle.

There are currently 47 Electric Vehicle (EV) charge points across the borough, provided by several different operators.

This year the council is working to increase the number of points with additional 25 Lamp column charge points which will be operated by Char.gy Ltd and 12 Standard charging points operated by BP Chargemaster Ltd. They also plan to consult on a proposal for possible introduction of additional standard charging points managed by Blue Point London.

For the 12 Standard Charging points, the works for these have already started, and the council expects for these to go live by the end of July 2020. The locations are as follows:
  • Princes Avenue, N10 – 2 EV points
  • Down Hills Park Road N17 - 4 EV points
  • Ewart Grove,N22 - 2 EV points
  • Henningham Road, N17 - 2 EV points
  • Landrock Road, N8 - 2 EV points
In regards to the 25 Lamp Column charging points, the locations were finalised in February 2020 and were programmed to be installed by the end of March 2020, however due to the COVID restrictions the works were postponed. Now due to the safety measures which are being put/will be put in place for COVID, the council are reviewing the locations to make sure that they will not be affected by new measures, and we expect to get the updated locations confirmed shortly.
 
In addition to the above works, the council are also looking into other offers/contracts from EV charging point providers in the market and other funding streams for next year (2021/2022) programme to expand the network in the borough.

To view a map of all existing charging points in the borough click here, and to find out more about EV charging in Haringey, including how to suggest a location for a future charging point, please see this page.

Note that council resources are limited and they are only able to install certain amount of EVCPs in a year, giving priority to locations in the borough that do not benefit from having any EV charging points based on demand.


1.11 Haringey Book of Remembrance launched

To honour those we have lost during the coronavirus pandemic, a virtual book of remembrance has been launched in Haringey.

Family, friends and carers now have a special designated place to pay tribute to loved ones who were living in Haringey, with a photo and a short, written message. Please share your tributes to loved ones.

Learn more and visit the dedicated website to sign the book of remembrance to honor a loved one.


1.12 Tesco Bags of Help COVID-19 Communities Fund

Tesco Bags of Help has responded to the current COVID-19 crisis by setting up a new fund to support local communities. In order to respond quickly to the emergency they have created a streamlined application and payment process to make it easier to get funds out.

The programme will provide a single payment award of £500 to organisations who are supporting vulnerable groups, as part of their emergency response in supporting local communities.

Typically, the fund will support organisations that have experienced;
  • Increased demand –  a holiday hunger club needs more resources to support children through the summer months or  a food bank whose stocks are running low and needs an immediate donation to enable the food bank to restock.
  • Disrupted services – a  local charity setting up a delivery service  to replace its monthly lunch club, or a charity needing to set up a telephone service to support beneficiaries.
  • New services – a health focused charity having to set up a new online patient service requires new IT equipment or a mental health charity developing a new service.
Click here to find out more and to apply.


1.13 Local Food Banks still require urgent donations

Food banks continue to support residents across the borough and are seeing supplies running desperately low. If you are able to support them please consider doing so.

Muswell Hill Foodbank (The Trussell Trust)
  1. If you need food
    • The Muswell Hill Foodbank on Pembroke Road is open on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays. You will need to get a  voucher from one of the Referral Agencies (Citizens Advice, Social Services, Job Centres, some schools and doctors surgeries and other local charities) before going to the foodbank. Strict social distancing is in place to ensure the safety of clients and volunteers.
  2. The foodbank urgently needs donations

The Holy Trinity Food Bank Stroud Green
  • Open every Sunday from 1.30pm – 3.30pm.
  • Please drop off donations at the food bank between 1.30pm - 3.30pm on Sundays. Alternatively there are dedicated collection bins at:
    • Sainsbury’s, 175-179 Stroud Green Road, N4 3PZ
    • Londis, 9-11 Ferme Park Road, N4 4DS
If you would like to make a monetary donation please email: htfoodbank@gmail.com and for more information visit: http://www.holytrinityfoodbank.org.uk/

The Gospel Centre Food Bank corner of Raleigh Road / Wightman Road, N8 OLT
  • Open Tuesday 6.30-8.30pm or Sunday 11.30-1pm.
  • Requires donations of non perishable food
  • Supporting those in need, especially from N8, N4 and N22 – no referral required
Enquiries to gospelcfoodbank@gmail.com

Bounds Green Food Bank Shaftesbury Hall, Herbert Road, Bounds Green, N11 2QN
  • Open 2pm-4pm every Tuesday, Thursday & Saturday
  • Accepting everyone that needs a foodbank (no voucher required)
  • Food donations accepted in the two hours before opening
Enquiries to BoundsGreenMutualAid@gmail.com


Other Local Foodbanks
1.14 Volunteering opportunities for local residents

Our voluntary organisations are working under huge pressure and looking for more help from the community:
1.15 Telephone befriending service

Staying at home can be lonely and it can be difficult to connect socially. As the lockdown continues this become ever more difficult for some of our residents.

Haringey Reach and Connect offer free calls to people in Haringey who would like to receive regular weekly calls from a friendly and supportive volunteer. The calls last approximately 30 minutes, and take place on the same day, at the same time, each week.  

They match older people and volunteers carefully, to ensure they have some common interests and friendships are reviewed regularly, to ensure that both parties find them enjoyable.  

If you would be interested in becoming or having a telephone befriender, please contact Reach and Connect who are running a special expanded service to respond to COVID-19, using this link: https://reachandconnect.net/get-support/telephone-friendship

2. OUR HARINGEY GIVING APPEAL


Please help us reach our new target of £5,000 for Haringey Giving, a fund managed by people in the Haringey community and endorsed by Haringey Council, which is supporting the borough’s most vulnerable people and community initiatives in response to the Covid-19 crisis.
 
You can see all the great projects that Haringey Giving Have donated to through the first wave of funding here and highlights of some of the outstanding projects and initiatives here.
 
Donations can be made here or by clicking the button below

Click here to donate whatever you can to our fundraiser appeal


3. HOW YOU CAN CONTACT US


We continue to operate our surgeries via telephone, and not in-person. To find you local councillor, their surgery details, and details on how to contact them any time by email, please refer to our Councillors webpage.

Alternatively if you have any questions about COVID-19, or need to get in touch for support on any other issue and are not represented by a Lib Dem councillor where you live but would like for us to assist you, please email me directly at luke.cawley-harrison@haringeylibdems.org for more information.

4. NATIONAL RESPONSE UPDATE


4.1 Face masks and coverings to be compulsory in shops from 24 July

The government announced on Monday 13 July, that in addition to being mandatory on public transport, wearing a face covering in shops and supermarkets in England is to become mandatory from Friday 24 July.

Should an individual without an exemption refuse to wear a face covering, a shop can refuse them entry and can call the police if people refuse to comply, who will be able to issue fines of £100.Children under 11 and those with certain disabilities will be exempt.

Please see here for advice on how to make your own cloth face covering.


4.2 Changes to lockdown – from 11 July

The Government continue to ease lockdown restrictions:

This means that from 11 July:
  • you can participate in team and other grassroots sports where the sports governing body has issued guidance on how to do so safely
  • outdoor swimming pools and outdoor water parks can open
  • outdoor performances in front of a live audience and indoor rehearsals can take place in COVID-19 secure venues. Indoor rehearsals and indoor performances for broadcast should only happen where no audience is present
  • smaller-scale indoor performances can be piloted in COVID-19 secure venues once approved by the government
From 13 July:
  • close contact services, such as nail bars, salons, tanning booths, spas, massage parlours, tattoo parlours and body piercing studios, can open. Only services that do not involve work in the highest risk zone – directly in front of the face – should be made available to clients, in line with government guidance.
And from 25 July:
  • sports facilities and venues, such as indoor gyms, fitness and dance studios, indoor swimming pools and indoor water parks, will open – subject to evidence closer to the time
As was already the case, in terms of seeing friends and family, you can:
  • meet in groups of up to two households (anyone in your support bubble counts as one household) in any location - public or private, indoors or outdoors. You do not always have to meet with the same household - you can meet with different households at different times. However, it remains the case - even inside someone’s home - that you should socially distance from anyone not in your household or bubble. This change also does not affect the support you receive from your carers
  • continue to meet outdoors in groups of up to six people from different households, following social distancing guidelines
  • stay overnight away from your home with your own household or support bubble, or with members of one other household
It remains the case that you should not:
  • socialise indoors in groups of more than two households (anyone in your support bubble counts as one household) – this includes when dining out or going to the pub
  • socialise outdoors in a group of more than six people from different households; gatherings larger than six should only take place if everyone is exclusively from two households or support bubbles
  • interact socially with anyone outside the group you are attending a place with, even if you see other people you know, for example, in a restaurant, community centre or place of worship
  • hold or attend celebrations (such as parties) where it is difficult to maintain social distancing
  • stay overnight away from your home with members of more than one other household (your support bubble counts as one household)
You should only be socialising in groups of up to two households indoors and outdoors or or up to six people from different households outdoors.

As businesses reopen and people begin to socialise more regularly, everyone should continue to socially distance from people they do not live with or are not in their support bubble, and should wash their hands regularly. This will help to protect you and anyone you come into contact with and is critical to keeping everyone as safe as possible.

If you or someone in your household or your support bubble is showing coronavirus symptoms, everyone in your support bubble should stay home. If you or a member of your support bubble is contacted as part of the test and trace programme, the individual contacted should stay at home. If that individual becomes symptomatic, everyone in the support bubble must then isolate. This is critical to staying safe and saving lives.


4.3 Shielding to be paused from 1st August

From 1 August, the government will pause shielding unless the transmission of COVID-19 in the community starts to rise significantly.

This means:
  • the government will no longer be advising you to shield
  • the support from the National Shielding Service of free food parcels, medicine deliveries and care will stop
  • NHS Volunteer Responders will carry on delivering the food you buy, prescriptions and essential items to you if you need it
  • you will still be eligible for priority supermarket slots (if you have registered by 17 July)
You may still be at risk of severe illness if you catch coronavirus, so stay at home as much as you can and continue to take precautions when you do go out. You can do this by washing your hands regularly, avoiding touching your face and keeping 2 metres away from people outside of your household or bubble wherever possible.

From 1 August, you’ll be advised you could go out to more places and see more people, for example, the advice is:
  • you can go to work, as long as the workplace is COVID-secure – but carry on working from home if you can
  • children who are clinically extremely vulnerable can go back to school (when the rest of their class goes back)
  • you can go outside to buy food, to places of worship and for exercise – keeping 2 metres away wherever possible
To read the guidance on shielding please visit this page.


4.4 Government jobs package announcement

This week the Chancellor announced steps to support jobs in the UK. This includes:
  • a Job Retention Bonus to help companies to keep furloughed workers
  • cutting the rate of VAT applied on most tourism and hospitality-related activities from 20% to 5%
  • a Kickstart Scheme to create new jobs for those aged 16-24, claiming Universal Credit and at risk of long-term unemployment.

Businesses can find full details on the government website.

Homeowners and businesses will also have the chance to apply for a grant to help make their homes and businesses greener.

A new ‘Eat Out To Help Out’ scheme will allow participating restaurants to offer half price meals every Monday to Wednesday throughout August – and there will also be VAT reduction for tourism and hospitality related activities.

In housing, stamp duty will be temporarily removed and changed to the Nil Rate Band of Residential SDLT (Stamp Duty) from £125,000 to £500,000 until 31 March 2021.

Read the Chancellor’s full speech.


4.5 Plans announced for return to full-time education
 

A range of proportionate, protective measures to ensure all children and young people can return to full-time education in the autumn term have been published on the Government website.

This latest guidance sets out a Public Health England-endorsed ‘system of controls’ to minimise the risks of coronavirus (COVID-19) transmission, as opposed to a ‘one size fits all’ approach for every possible scenario.

Depending on a school’s specific circumstances, this will – as much as possible – include:

  • Grouping children together
  • Avoiding contact between groups
  • Arranging classrooms with forward facing desks
  • Staff maintaining distance from pupils and other staff as much as possible

These plans have been adapted from the arrangements already in place from the ongoing summer term, with the essential measures being the following:

  • A requirement that people who are ill stay at home
  • Robust hand and respiratory hygiene
  • Enhanced cleaning arrangements
  • Active engagement with NHS Test and Trace
  • Formal consideration of how to reduce contacts and maximise distancing between those in school wherever possible and minimise potential for contamination so far as is reasonably practicable

Public health advice on how to minimise coronavirus (COVID-19) risks is also included in this guidance, along with contingency plans for any local coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreaks.

This autumn term guidance is largely replicated in the proposed arrangements for the full reopening of special schools and other specialist settings. However, there’s some more specific information as well for early years settings, mainstream schools and further education (FE) colleges and providers on the steps they will need to take to ensure children with special educational needs and disabilities (SEND) can return to full-time provision.

There are further details too on individual risk assessments for children and young people with education, health and care (EHC) plans and the temporary changes to SEND legislation.



4.6 Self-isolating restrictions after overseas travel - update

Coronavirus regulations mean that you must self-isolate for 14 days if you arrive in the UK from a country outside the common travel area.

The government is satisfied that it is now safe to ease these measures in England and has introduced travel corridor exemptions for some countries and territories.

If you arrived back in England before 10 July 2020, you should follow the self-isolation rules that applied at the time you arrived.

For more information and the list of travel corridor countries see here.


4.7 FCO travel advice and your stay abroad

The Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO) continues to advise against non-essential international travel, except to countries and territories exempt from advice against ‘all but essential’ international travel.

You will have to comply with coronavirus requirements in the country you travel to. This may include self-isolating or providing your details to local authorities.

FCO travel advice includes information on any health measures in place for visitors to a country or territory. These can include a requirement to self-isolate, quarantine or undergo testing for coronavirus, or even restrictions on entry.

Before and while you are travelling, check: Make sure you have appropriate travel insurance in case you have unexpected costs.


4.8 Driving lessons, theory tests and driving tests to restart

The Driver and Vehicle Standards Agency (DVSA) has announced that learners can resume driving lessons and motorcycle training in England from Saturday 4 July 2020.

The rule applies to all types of driver and motorcycle training in England, including private practice with someone you live with or in your support bubble.

Theory tests will restart in England on Saturday 4 July. The tests will take place with social distancing measures in place to help stop the spread of coronavirus.

Car driving tests will restart in England on Wednesday 22 July, which will give learner drivers time to have refresher lessons and practice before taking their test.
 

Please let us know of any further issues you want us to look into and help remedy by emailing contact@haringeylibdems.org and we will do our best to help.

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