SWANSEA Council is transforming the way it works to support local communities during the unprecedented Coronavirus crisis.
Critical front-line services like recycling, social services, child care, burials and emergency highways and council house repairs will continue while hundreds of support staff are working from home to keep the council operating.
But staff working in non-essential services are being re-trained and re-directed to help provide critical services.
Large numbers of staff are stepping up to the plate and transforming what they do to help their communities during this crisis.
Rob Stewart, Leader of the Council, said: “We are facing unprecedented challenges due to the Coronavirus crisis. We are rapidly changing services and have already completely transformed some while creating and deploying new services.
“We need to continue providing vital services like home care, social services and collecting refuse to keep our communities clean and healthy so that we help stop the spread of Coronavirus.
“But we also need to support the most vulnerable in our communities. Many people will be told to self-isolate and we are gearing up to help support them so that they have food and essential items whilst having to stay at home for 12 weeks.
“The people of Swansea are going to need their council more than ever before, but they need us to provide different support.
“We’ve closed the likes of libraries, leisure centres, housing offices and stopped all events which means we can re-train and re-direct staff to support the vulnerable.
“We are prioritising our workforce to provide critical services and deliver new services that really matter.”
Among the measures being put in place are:
- A new call centre providing practical support for the most vulnerable, including those being asked to self-isolate for up to 12 weeks.
- Running food banks and providing meals for those in need.
- The creation of a community taskforce to help meet the needs of those who cannot leave home.
- Specific support for the homeless.
- Hubs at schools to provide childcare for key workers who are keeping the NHS and other vital services going.
- Establishing a distribution network with our partners to ensure the vulnerable and those living in poverty are supported.
- Converting buildings such as leisure centres into temporary hospitals to deal with the growing number of Coronavirus cases.
Cllr Stewart added: “Our NHS and emergency services are working round the clock in the most daunting circumstances and much of our work is to support them and save lives.”
“Swansea Council is also facing unprecedented challenges but our staff are rising to that challenge, taking on new roles and doing everything they can to help our communities.”