In a video message to residents, the leader of Dudley Council has warned that this is not a time to be complacent in the fight against coronavirus.
In the video, Councillor Patrick Harley urges residents to play their part to avoid a local lockdown by continuing to follow the guidelines including practicing social distancing, washing hands regularly and wearing a face mask.
This comes as the government introduces new restrictions in England, which limits gatherings to six people both indoors and outdoors with some exemptions. Dudley borough, like many areas up and down the country has seen a rise in the number of cases in the last few weeks but still has the lowest number of cases in the Black Country.
The latest publicly available data shows there were 66 cases from September 1 to September 7, a rate of 20.5 cases per 100,000 residents, compared to 36 the previous week, a rate of 11.2 cases per 100,000. Councillor Patrick Harley, leader of Dudley Council, said:
"Together we can beat this virus. We know it’s not behind us and there may be more challenging times ahead but if we all play our part, we can reduce the spread of infection. We must continue to take this seriously and follow the latest advice and restrictions.
"Please if you or anyone in your household is showing symptoms, get a test, stay a home and protect your fellow citizens."
On the increase in cases, Dudley Council’s director of public health, Bal Kaur, who also features in a video message to residents, added: "Although our figures still remain the lowest in the Black Country, we are starting to see a steady rise in the number of cases.
"This is why we must all take action, listen to the advice and do what we can right now. We have come a long way and we continue our fight against coronavirus. Although we’re not at the point of a local lockdown, we all need to continue to do our bit, so it stays that way in Dudley."
The leader’s video message forms part of a social media campaign which also includes video messages from a local GP, teacher and parents. Residents are urged to continue to stay at home as much as possible, limit contact with other people and work from home if they can.
When out and about residents should:
- keep their distance from others and avoid crowds. Stay two metres away from others, where they can
- wear a face covering when on public transport, shopping or in enclosed public spaces to reduce the spread of the virus
- wash their hands regularly throughout the day
- Symptoms include a high temperature, new and continuous cough or a loss or change to smell and taste. Anyone with symptoms must get tested and stay at home for ten days from the first day they had symptoms. Book a test online at www.nhs.uk/ask-for-a-coronavirus-test or call 119.
If people are contacted by Test and Trace, they are urged to share as much information as possible. The data is only used to help reduce the spread of COVID-19.
If a member of a household thinks they may have the virus, not only is it important they get tested, but they need to follow government guidance on what to do to stop the infection spreading to other family members.
For the latest information on help and support from Dudley Council, residents can go to dudley.gov.uk/coronavirus.