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Leader provides update on how we're working together to combat Coronavirus

Posted on 25 Mar 2020
These are challening and difficult times.

As a local politician, I don’t have all the answers. But I’m following the advice of the public health experts. It’s up to every single one of us to play our part in stopping the spread of COVID -19.

What I can influence is the support North Ayrshire Council provide.

 Since things reached crisis point last week, the situation has changed hourly and we’ve been constantly updating our website and social media channels to provide timeous updates.

 It will have been an emotional rollercoaster for school pupils, parents/carers and teachers over the last few weeks. The fact the Scottish Government has cancelled exams for the first time underlines the enormity of the situation we face.

 Teachers and staff, supported by our Education department, will assist in any way they can. While everyone will miss the face-to-face interaction, online lesson plans will help provide structure and guidance for home learning and mitigate the loss of classroom time. We will continue to update and if you have any queries, please get in touch with the school

 Council tenants will be understandably worried about their tenancy. We’ve suspended all evictions – which are an absolute last resort in normal circumstances in any case – and hope that provides some reassurance to our tenants.

 Businesses will be worried about their future. But despite this a number  - such as Bonnymans, Arran Sense and the Red Squirrel – have already stepped up to help others with incredible acts of kindness.

 Please support local businesses. It’s vital these businesses are there to help kick-start our economy further down the line.

 While we are all affected by this, our most vulnerable residents will be feeling particularly anxious and concerned. 

 Our Connected Communities team is opening six community hubs - North Coast & Cumbrae, Garnock Valley, Irvine, Kilwinning, Three Towns and Arran from Tuesday – to be a local point of contact for community need arising from COVID-19.   

 The hubs will not be open for the public to visit but will be a base for a small coordination team to operate from and to support those who are vulnerable due to health conditions.

 We are also delighted to be providing weekly food packages to those families in receipt of free school meals and/or a school clothing grant.

 We are doing our best to support key workers and the first phase of our plan to provide care for their children was adopted on Monday. You’ll appreciate this is an evolving situation and a testing one logistically. Thanks to a range of teams  - Education, Active Schools, Youth Services, the Family Learning team and libraries - for pulling together to support these kids.

KA Leisure have had to close facilities but are supporting us in many other ways so a huge thanks to them.

 I have been blown away by the acts of kindness from people across the region. These are challenging times but once again our communities are displaying solidarity with their friends and neighbours, supporting our vulnerable through this

If we keep looking out for each other, while respecting the advice being provided, we can and will get to the other side of this.

 Check our website and social media channels for regular updates