Throughout this crisis, I have been amazed at the resilience, determination and bravery of our colleagues who have been working in the most challenging of circumstances. Our nurses, care workers, support workers and repair teams have met each challenge with bravery and dignity, and we owe them our enormous respect and gratitude.
They have continued to provide help and support for those people who most need it, adapted to ongoing changes in safe working guidance, and introduced new technologies – whatever is needed – to make sure that our customers are cared for and protected.
Our residential care home, Barley View, is operating under very careful and controlled conditions, but it is reassuring to see the news and images that they share each day to help put the minds of family and friends at ease. They are doing an incredible job.
Likewise, our Gateway homelessness team have been working hard to ensure customers remain safe; many of whom struggle with additional issues including mental health problems and substance addictions, and have a limited understanding of the current crisis. The staff is a particularly challenging role and they have done a remarkable job to help rehouse so many people over the last few weeks.
SafeNet are still providing support and advice for people experiencing domestic abuse across Lancashire; something we have sadly seen increase as a result of lockdown. They have recently introduced a Live Chat service to help support anyone who is isolated and are doing a remarkable job to help women and families who are at risk.
For both SafeNet and Gateway, we have also continued to refurbish empty homes and provide additional emergency accommodation. We are pleased to have increased the number of safe places where rough sleepers and victims of domestic abuse can stay.
As we see encouraging signs that the country might be slowly turning the tide on the coronavirus crisis, we are continuing to make sure that our essential services are working as safely as possible in the community. We are also looking at how and when we can cautiously start to resume our other services, wherever it is safe to do so.
Paying close attention to Government advice and safe working practices, our construction activities are now resuming at some sites where Ring Stones can operate safely – this means well within the safe-distancing guidelines and with significantly reduced numbers of staff on site at any one time. The benefit of ongoing construction work is important for local employment, local suppliers and the economy and we will continue to monitor the situation closely.
Calico Homes continues to offer support for anyone struggling financially or experiencing ASB. They are still carrying out gas safety checks and emergency repairs. We encourage customers to please still contact us with non-emergency repairs, so that we can log any issues, even if they cannot be resolved immediately.
I would like to remind everyone that, whilst work continues, social distancing is still more important than ever and will save lives – please stay at home and stay safe if you can.