“It’s more important than ever to do the right thing for Solihull”
The local news over the weekend was mainly concerned with the situation in Birmingham, after it was announced that the city was on the government’s ‘watch list’. As Birmingham is such a close neighbour, I know many will be concerned over the implications for Solihull. So far, so good, it is fair to say; our numbers are increasing, but they are relatively small, and we are spending an enormous amount of time monitoring the situation and keeping in close contact with neighbouring councils. But our numbers could change very quickly – if we are not careful here in Solihull.
What we all have to guard against is complacency. More recently we have slowly and surely regained some measure of normal life, but we do not want this to be cut short.
At the weekend, I received complaints about some premises not taking the situation seriously, in terms of how they are managing social distancing and basic hygiene management. A second spike will lead to restrictions being imposed, and we really do not want this. There are reports that more younger people are being infected, and it would be easy to conclude that this is linked to more young people socialising in pubs and restaurants, not taking necessary precautions.
Social distancing literally means keeping your distance; (not forgetting) to take and use your face coverings; stepping up hygiene and infection control by hand washing and use of hand-sanitisers and the like. All of these cut down the risk of transmission and these behaviours must remain part of our lives for the foreseeable future.
We are now planning for schools to return and this is a priority both for the government and for us. In Solihull, we are blessed with wonderful schools, excellent teachers and staff and it is vital that our children and young people get back to their education. I want you to continue to enjoy getting out to our centres to shop or eat out. For this to continue, we have to keep doing the things that have got us here and encouraging others to do likewise.
Social distancing, washing hands frequently, wearing face coverings and at the first sign of Covid-19 getting a test! It is all down to us now. It is literally in our own hands. Please keep doing the right thing for Solihull.
Councillor Ian Courts, Leader of Solihull Council