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Issue 6: 4 May 2020

Business grants

Councillor Hinds, Lead Member for Finance and Support Services, leads the drive to ensure our local businesses get the support they need. He is receiving regular updates on the progress in processing business grants for small businesses, which he wishes to share with members, the latest information is attached.

Salford received £47.4m on 1 April for business grants and has identified 3,866 eligible businesses. New processes had to be set up to pay these grants and additional staff brought in. A communications campaign is using social media to raise awareness of the grants to businesses and how they can apply. To date (4 May 2020) 2,201 (56.9%) of grants have been issued, £25.85m in total.

A number of small businesses were ineligible for the grant due to technicalities in the criteria.  The Government has announced some further extensions and discretions to the grants to allow local authorities greater discretion in supporting their small business economy.  There is also additional funding being made available.   Further detail and guidance is expected this week. In particular this will extend to include small businesses in shared premises who do not pay business rates direct but as part of their rent.

The NHS “open for business” campaign

The council has supported the NHS “open for business” campaign through its social media channels. The key messages are:

  • If you need medical help, the NHS is still here for you.
  • If you need medical help from your GP practice, contact them either online, by an app or by phone to be assessed.
  • If you need urgent medical help, use the NHS 111 online service. If you cannot get help online, call 111.
  • If it’s a serious or life-threatening emergency, call 999
  • If you are told to go to hospital it is important that you go to hospital.
  • You should continue to attend your appointments, unless you have been told not to attend.

Other messages are also aimed at prescriptions, vaccinations, cancer patients, heart attack patients, stroke patients, pregnant women, mental health and people with learning disabilities.

Councillors are asked to share these messages so that we reach as many of our residents as possible.

PUBLIC HEALTH UPDATES

Coronavirus Cases

Salford continues to see an increase in new cases reflecting the expansion of testing in the city. As of Sunday 3 May, 714 people in Salford have tested positive for coronavirus (an increase of 28% since last Monday, 156 additional cases).

PPE

Changes to the National Guidance mean that stock is now required for a wider range of settings, including children’s residential homes, special schools and other settings, intelligence gathering on the projected stock required is underway.

Testing

We have greatly expanded community testing, these are no longer just the severe cases tested in hospital – in the care home outbreaks, we are finding the number of residents with symptoms is now reducing in most care homes, which could indicate that the situation may be stabilising locally but there remains a significant risk of further outbreaks.

Information for parents of new born babies and children.

The council has a resource online to help parents identify illness in newborn babies and children. This resource includes 3 leaflets:

These resources have been promoted through the council’s social media channels. Other resources are also available on the same web page including how to talk to children about coronavirus and managing anxiety, tips on home schooling and ideas for things to do at home.

Mental health and wellbeing resources.

The council has an online resource to help residents access a wide range of mental health and wellbeing services that are freely available for anyone to use.  The services cover a wide age range across multiple access platforms. As well as specifics on the page on how to access the services there are also links to the GMHSC web pages and resources.  All of these mental health and wellbeing resources have been promoted on the council’s social media channels.

COVID death rate in Salford – ONS Data

Published data from the Office for National Statistics (ONS) put the number of deaths involving COVID-19 in Salford up to 17 April at 184. All of these deaths occurred in the 4 weeks leading up to 17th April during which time there were a total of 375 deaths in Salford, meaning just under a half

(49%) involved COVID. The proportion of deaths across the country linked to COVID during this period was 32%. The twenty areas with the highest proportion of deaths that involved COVID were in London, with the exception of Salford (19th highest).

More recent analysis (ONS), covering deaths involving COVID over the period 1 March – 17 April 2020 adjusts for the size and age structure of local populations. Salford had a rate of 92.6 COVID deaths per 100,000 population, higher than any area outside Greater London and 2.5 times the national average.

The higher rate could be due to our proactive local response in recognising cases and a more rigorous local testing regime.

KEY SERVICE UPDATES

A full list of information about council services and access by the public can be found at council services information.

Place Services

Salford recycling centres are now open for black bin waste only. The following are open Cobden Street (Saturdays and Sundays), with Lumns Lane and Boysnope Wharf open 7 days a week.

The days of access however are being arranged by number plate, i.e odd numbers one day and even numbers the next.  

People Services

Childcare providers are completing welfare checks for children who may not reach the Children’s Plan/ Children in Need levels, but were they have concerns for the family. The information is being collated and escalated to relevant teams such as early help/ social care if wider support is required.

Spirit of Salford Network

The Spirit of Salford Helpline has received 6,800 telephone calls, along with over 1,000 requests for support from the website. Food boxes have been delivered to a total of 2,025, in the past week 177 food boxes have been requested for shielded people and 1,202 for non shielded. 

ACCESSIBILITY

Food supply

The Food Hub reports that Kosher food boxes were made available from Friday 1st May 2020 along with kosher food vouchers for people who are struggling to afford food but able to get shopping.

GOVERNMENT

Local government emergency funding

The local authority allocation of the additional £1.6 billion local government funding has been announced. Salford will receive a further £7,141,397. This is on top of the £8,910,681 previously allocated, bringing total emergency funding to £16,052,078.

Guide for parents on radicalisation

government guide has been produced which contains information and support for parents about radicalisation and the grooming process. It warns of the dangers of young people being drawn into online radicalisation and provides details of sources of support for concerned parents.

Bounce back loans

Britain’s small businesses will be able to apply for quick and easy-to access loans of up to £50,000 from today.  As part of the scheme, small businesses can borrow between £2,000 and £50,000. The government will provide lenders with a 100% guarantee and cover the cost of any fees and interest for the borrower for the first 12 months.

Extra funding for survivor support

The Communities Secretary has announced £76 million funding to support survivors of domestic abuse (£28m), sexual violence (£10m) and vulnerable children (£34.15m) and their families and victims of modern slavery (£1.73m).

A change to the rules will also mean that those fleeing domestic abuse and facing homelessness as a result will be automatically considered as priority by their council for housing – ensuring more survivors of domestic abuse have access to a safe home.

This funding is coming from the £750 million package of support for charities announced by the Chancellor last month.

Modern Slavery

Victims of modern slavery can be referred into support by designated First Responder Organisations such as the police or local authorities. However, during the crisis victims may be coming into contact with other frontline services.

The Home Office has produced a slide which provides information for frontline staff that are not First Responders on how to spot the signs of modern slavery, and what to do if they suspect someone may be a victim.

Video technology to be used in criminal justice system 

HM Courts and Tribunals Service is bringing in a new video platform to enable all parties in a criminal hearing to take part remotely – allowing all magistrate and crown courts in England and Wales to hold secure hearings.

GREATER MANCHESTER

City Airport activity

City Airport and Manchester Heliport are currently closed to all aircraft and helicopter movements, with the exception of certain types of flights. The following five flight categories may take place from City Airport.

  • Emergency Services - These include Police Helicopter, Air Ambulance and related emergency services.
  • Military - Military helicopter activity which may include flights related to Covid-19 and routine training flights.
  • Essential Services flights - This may include helicopters such as those which conduct utility inspections, Network Rail and media.
  • Survey Flights - Flights conducting aerial surveys may be visible at times. These are routine surveys that often provide mapping data. In general these flights do not take place from City Airport, but may be observed in the vicinity as they operate nationwide. 

The Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) has permitted certain aircraft maintenance flights to take place with certain restrictions. These flights are designed to keep aircraft safe and airworthy, preserving the safe operation of engines which may otherwise be affected during periods where aircraft are unable to be flown. 

CELEBRATIONS

Salford Assist

The council’s discretionary support scheme – Salford Assist has seen a significant increase in demand over recent weeks providing specialist advice and financial support to over 1700 people since 23 March 2020. 

The Salford Assist team needed help and this request went out through our resourcing hub. The team quickly identified people with the right skills and who  could potentially help. There are currently around 20 volunteers who are using their transferable skills and are doing a fantastic job. Volunteers range from across the council including internal audit, insurance, neighbourhood management, policy and strategy, highways, democratic services, finance, Salford Community Leisure (SCL) and housing options. Not forgetting the full time team of Salford Assist assessors who have also risen to the challenge by acting as buddies to the team of volunteers offering advice, guidance and often a listening ear.

Operation Encompass Early Years

As part of the ongoing hard work and effort to safeguard children in Salford, we recently launched our Operation Encompass Early Years model. In a true partnership approach the Early Help team has worked alongside the police, health and wider children’s social care team to design a model to coordinate support for children under the age of five years old, where there has been a police call out because of domestic abuse.

This will help ensure children and families are supported by the most appropriate service after an incident. Building on the well-established good work delivered via Operation Encompass, we are sure this model will support our early years’ children and families at this difficult time and beyond. Thank you to everyone who has been involved in developing this great service.