Town and Parish Clerks of Dorset enjoy regular conference calls with Dorset Council’s Chief Executive, and I would like to update you on the Dorset Council’s Coordinated COVID-19 Response and issues faced:
• Operation Shield is in place to support residents identified as being at most risk by the NHS who have been told to self-isolate for 12 weeks. Dorset Council have over 2000 volunteers to assist the most vulnerable and this is being coordinated centrally. This includes deliveries of food stuffs and local delivery mechanisms are being set up.
• A postcard is being delivered to every household in Dorset regarding COVID-19 with website and telephone details that residents can call regarding Council Tax payments, benefits and any business concerns relating to the effects of the pandemic. There is also radio advertising to this effect.
• There are county-wide issues with waste collection currently – sadly, no more so than in Wareham with a large number of crew currently off sick from the Wareham depot. Employees from other areas are being redeployed in an attempt to provide cover but expect some disruptions to service. Your understanding is appreciated.
• Household tip sites are now closed and missed bin collections cancelled. Dorset Waste Partnership is concentrating on residential and food waste collections.
• Local food banks are struggling so Dorset Council has paid £1000 into each to assist.
• Registration of deaths can now be done over the phone due to the new legislation in place and Dorset Council Registrars are working to enable that.
• Pharmacies are struggling with deliveries so 10 highway crews have been trained and are available assist. Pharmacies are being asked to contact Dorset Council if this assistance is required in their areas.
• Over 2200 Dorset Council employees are now working from home.
Vanessa Ricketts, Wareham Town Clerk