Dundee City Council is working closely with partners across the city to deal with the increasing impact of Coronavirus (Covid-19).
Officers are monitoring the local situation daily and following the advice given by government and NHS public health experts. The council continues to consider appropriate actions based on the national guidance.
As of Friday July 17:
- ‘Stay Safe and Keep in Touch’ A message from Simon Little, independent chair of the Dundee Alcohol and Drug Partnership
- Essential Business Update – Proposal to change the school terms, holidays and in-service days for session 2020/20
- Government Mobile Testing Unit to Return to Dundee
From Simon Little, independent chair of the Dundee Alcohol and Drug Partnership
Dundee Alcohol and Drug Partnership are concerned that the impact of Covid 19 is increasing the chances of social isolation amongst people that use drugs and alcohol. Isolation, and other stressors caused by the pandemic can have negative impacts on mental wellbeing and increase alcohol or drug related harm.
As a community we all need to look out for each other. Lockdown rules and social distancing must be followed but there are now increasing opportunities to get out and about safely; the relaxed rules means it’s easier to visit friends and family. Even if people can’t get out or be physically together, it’s easy to keep in touch. Chat is good.
At the present time there may be unusual substances in circulation. Where people are using drugs Harm Reduction Services offer the following advice:
- Avoid mixing drugs
- Use less of each drug
- Take a test dose and start slow – similar drugs can vary widely in strength
- Make sure you are somewhere safe and connected to someone you trust – e.g. by phone.
Help is available for those who have concerns about their alcohol or drug consumption; the same is true for friends and families. The City’s main support services are available by phone on their normal numbers; they want to hear from you, even if it’s just to hear that you’re ok.
There are also national helpline services such as Scottish Families Affected by Drugs and Alcohol (SFAD) and The Scottish Recovery Consortium.
Everyone will have their own unique reaction to lockdown. However, there are some simple steps we can all follow to help optimise our mental wellbeing. Things like keeping a routine to our day, achieving a balance between things that we need to do and things that we like to do, looking after our physical wellbeing by trying to exercise and eat well and taking time to rest and sleep. It can also help to try to focus on some of the positive things we have in life. If social media and the news are getting you down, try to limit how much time you are spending on the internet.
Mental health services in City have been working throughout the pandemic and there are many organisations offering support to people who are struggling with their mental wellbeing. Both the Dundee City Council and NHS Tayside websites have a list of resources you may find helpful.
Recovery services and communities are not yet able to meet face to face but supports is available online and by phone. SMART recovery groups with Peer Volunteers are being run by a range of providers; contact We are with You (formerly Addaction), Tayside Council on Alcohol (TCA), or Hillcrest Futures. Recovery communities are also active on social media.
As friends, families and communities we can help one another - Stay Safe and Keep in Touch.
As a result of Coronavirus restrictions, the council and its committees are not able to meet. Essential business has therefore been delegated to the Executive Director of Children and Families Service in consultation with the Convener of the Children and Families Committee, representatives of each opposition group, the independent member and the Lord Provost.
Agreement has been reached that Dundee schools will reopen to pupils on a phased basis from Wednesday August 12, with full-time lessons beginning from Monday August 17, if it safe to do so.
In addition, Monday 10 and Tuesday 11 August 2020 will both become in-service days for staff.
The arrangements, which have been agreed with political leaders and trade unions, may yet be subject to change depending on scientific advice.
For the full report see here.
Meanwhile, the Government Covid-19 mobile testing centre will return to Dundee from Saturday, July 18 until July 26.
The centre will again be located in the parking area at the Michelin Athletic Club, Drumgeith Road.
Places must be booked in advance, and dates and locations may be subject to change at short notice.
The purpose of the Government testing programme is to determine whether those with coronavirus (Covid-19) symptoms (however mild) have the virus, and will therefore be able to know whether or not they should be isolating.
This programme is open to anyone over five who shows symptoms of coronavirus - a high temperature, new, continuous cough or loss of taste or smell.
It runs alongside the existing health and social care key worker testing programme and is in addition to the testing facility already in place through NHS Tayside.
For more details about symptoms, testing and the process for booking a place at the mobile unit see https://www.taysidecares.co.uk/test-and-protect.
The full list of council services affected by Coronavirus can be found on the Dundee City Council website.
Dundee draws skilled workers from a 60-minute catchment population of 640,000 and has a local population of over 140,000. The availability of a large pool of highly skilled labour is a key feature in the Dundee economy. Flexibility in the labour force is currently more prevalent in Dundee than in Scotland as a whole. All forms of labour market flexibility - part-time, temporary employment, self-employment and shift work - are widely operational within the city. Labour force stability in the city is excellent, enabling companies to plan with confidence. Labour turnover levels are less than 5% and absenteeism averages 2%.