Croydon, like the rest of the capital, is at a pivotal moment in the fight against Covid-19. The number of cases is continuing to rise across London, including here in Croydon where in the last 14 days we have seen 408 new cases, compared with 134 new cases in the previous 14 days.
While many may only experience mild symptoms, this virus can have a devastating impact on our most vulnerable loved ones – grandparents, other family members and friends.
And although the human cost is by far the greatest, as many of you who have lost jobs or been forced to close businesses in the last lockdown will know only too well, Covid-19 also has a huge impact on our economy.
That is why it is vital that we all do our bit to help keep Croydon safe and make some small sacrifices now to avoid much greater ones in the weeks and months come.
By just following the public health guidance, we can help to prevent the infection spreading among our community so please, don’t meet in groups larger than six; keep a 2m distance from others; cover your face in enclosed public spaces and wash your hands regularly.
If you have any of the Covid-19 symptoms, or if you have been in close contact with anyone who has tested positive, even if you feel well or the symptoms are mild you must self-isolate and get tested. This means staying at home, only leaving to get a test and continuing to self-isolate while you wait for the results.
And as you travel to a test centre, remember you should not be using public transport or taxis, or visiting the shops as you could spread the virus to others.
If you don’t have a car and you can’t walk to your nearest test centre, try and order a home test, and if you need shopping or other supplies, ask a friend or neighbour to help if you can. If you don’t have anyone you can ask, there are local groups across Croydon who can help – visit Croydon Voluntary Action (CVA)’s website for more information. Many of our local shops now offer delivery so you can keep supporting them even from home – and please do shop responsibly and avoid panic buying.
So even if you don’t feel worried about the impact of Covid-19 on your own health, please think of others around you. We have already suffered too many losses to this pandemic and we need to work together as we did before, to protect ourselves and each other – our health, our families, our jobs and our local economy, now and in the future.
World Mental Health Day
Tomorrow is World Mental Health Day and this year, the event has even greater significance, as many of us have experienced a year like no other.
Covid-19 has had huge implications for not only our physical but also our mental wellbeing, as we have coped with the challenges of lockdown, uncertainty and disruption to our everyday lives. For those who were already experiencing mental health issues and their carers, it has been particularly tough.
It is more important than ever that we all look after our mental health and ask for help if we need it. There are so many local services that offer support. And also, look after those around you – be aware of the signs that someone is struggling and encourage them to get help. You could make all the difference.
Walk to School Week
Finally, if there can be something positive from this pandemic, it is that we have seen a huge increase in the number of residents of all ages choosing more sustainable travel.
This week is Walk to School Week and it is great to see that all over our borough, we are seeing more and more pupils enjoying safer and healthier journeys as their parents leave the car at home. You can see some of our young people talking about this here.
As a council we are determined to help you continue to do this, through schemes like Streetspaces and School Streets which we know many of you have welcomed and are enjoying in your own neighbourhoods.
We’re always interested to hear from you about how we can improve existing schemes as well as suggestions for new ones. You can find out more and give feedback on our webpages – we are listening.
Have a good weekend – stay safe,
Councillor Tony Newman, leader of the council