Enquiries from residents to help those most in need if it proves necessary over the course of coming months in response to COVID-19 are being welcomed.
The news follows various national discussions and news that the council is paying heightened attention to the evolving situation, with a specialist group having been formed within the council to co-ordinate information and guidance from the government and the NHS.
Councillor Diane Smith, Executive Councillor for Adult Services and Public Health said, “Nobody can still be unaware of the very serious threat posed by this virus. As the scale of the threat has become clearer by the day, the increasing willingness of kind hearted people to offer themselves to help those worst affected in whatever way they can has been truly inspiring.”
“In addition to looking after your own families and friends which clearly goes without saying, the very best thing that every able person should be doing at this critical time, is to be more proactive in looking out for your neighbours, particularly those identified as being vulnerable, to ensure they remain OK. They may very well need your thoughtful assistance over coming weeks, whilst always of course paying attention to the latest government advice concerning close contact.
This approach sits right at the very heart of the borough’s ‘Friends’ and loneliness strategies of which we are all so proud and will make their lives a little easier during the difficult days which lie ahead.”
Councillor Smith continued, “Also please keep a very wary eye out for them to ensure those with less noble intentions are thwarted from any dishonest activity or scams they might come up with. I would absolutely implore everybody who possibly can, to involve themselves in a massive effort to get Bromley and our people through these worrying times in the best shape we possibly can.”
If we get this right and all work together for the greater good, we can and will emerge from this crisis as an even stronger, more cohesive and better borough to live in than when we entered it, and that ambition really ought to now be driving us all”.
The council is adopting the lead coordinating role amongst all interested parties seeking to do their bit to help. Residents who want to volunteer to help with practical tasks locally to their area are being encouraged to register to volunteer so that contact can be made should their help be called upon.
Please be aware that during these times a small number of people with alternative ideas may seek to take advantage of the situation. At these times please remain mindful of the following advice:
Seek assistance from trusted neighbours and friends wherever possible, or reputable local charities and churches if this isn’t possible.
Only give cash to someone you know well and trust.
Do not give your bank card and pin number out to anybody.
Plan in advance as online shopping deliveries currently take over 7 days to arrive.
Consider alternative delivery services to the supermarket, such as the local milk man (who can deliver groceries as well as milk) or businesses delivering food locally such as “veg box” type deliveries.
If you or someone you know is being targeted by a scammer purporting to be aiding with home assistance, or any other scam then call the Rapid Response Team on 07903 852090. In appropriate cases, officers from the Trading Standards Rogue Trading team will attend and investigate.
This Rapid Response Service is for Bromley residents only; if you live outside the borough, please contact your local Trading Standards Department through your local council.
The council is actively signposting residents to the latest advice through its website and twitter account to ensure that everyone remains alerted to further updates as they appear. This includes encouraging visitors to the Civic Centre to use the website where they can make contact with the council rather than attending in person as they might normally. Links to the latest national advice can be found on the council’s website at bromley.gov.uk/COVID-19.
Residents are also being reminded that if they are unfortunate and become unwell, then they should follow the government’s advice as it will provide the most up-to-date advice or, for those without internet access, call NHS111.
For the latest information about COVID-19, visit bromley.gov.uk/covid-19