Mansfield mayor praises 'heroic' council workers for their efforts throughout pandemic
January was a really tough month as lockdown, short days, cold weather, and the emotional stress of increasing infection and death rates made it difficult to remain positive.
What motivates me to ‘get up and go’ though, are the actions of the people around us who make so many personal sacrifices to help others.
There have been the heroic efforts of doctors, nurses, care workers, police, teachers and all the key workers that have kept going in the face of enormous challenges.
And I want to give a shout out to the council.
Besides keeping statutory services going, helping vulnerable people has been a major part of the council’s work over the past year and the way officers have regularly gone above and beyond has been amazing.
The statistics behind the council’s humanitarian response since April 2020 are staggering and I am extremely proud to be associated with an organisation that cares so much.
The council has completed 27,000 safe and well checks by phone, assisting with issues such as emergencies, practical advice, emotional support and shopping for people who are shielding or self-isolating.
The emergency control room has taken 66,824 calls – 2,841 of which required emergency service assistance – and called more than 600 vulnerable council and private tenants, to identify potential support needs.
The housing department has dealt with 1,500 enquiries from people at risk of homelessness; prevented 616 households from homelessness, fitted 345 Lifeline systems and key safes in homes, taken 479 actions to enable the earlier discharge of patients from King’s Mill Hospital and supported 190 patients returning home with medication deliveries.
The council has also distributed more than £30,000 of supermarket vouchers to local organisations to help vulnerable people experiencing hardship as a result of the pandemic.
All these deeds make the staff heroes in my eyes.
More good news is that the over-65s are being called forward for vaccinations at sites across the county, including the Mansfield Vaccination Centre (former Wickes store) on Chesterfield Road South.
I want to appeal to everyone who goes out to work to have a rapid test at the One Call Stadium or Oak Tree Leisure Centre.
A big thank you those who have already attended, many have cited being good citizens and protecting their family as the reasons for being tested.
Unfortunately, I have to finish on a cautionary note.
Although infection rates in the district have fallen, they remain too high.
Even after you have had your vaccine, please keep following all the rules including hands, face, space – keep Mansfield safe.
We still have some way to go before we can celebrate victory.
Coun Andy Abrahams is the executive mayor of Mansfield.