The Saturday Briefing –

The Saturday Briefing- Covid-19 and the effects of the Pandemic, is still creating lots of talk, and issues here in Wednesfield North.

Covid-19 infection rate
Latest data shows the current infection rate in the City of Wolverhampton is 802.7 people per 100,000 for the week leading up to 18 January. That means 2,112 people in the city tested positive for the virus in that seven day period, although the true number of cases will likely be higher.

With the infection rates so high across the Country, it should not be a surprise to see The Government urging people to follow the Guidelines. Those that do not are being treated with much more interest by the Authorities. leading to enforcement action.

Enforcement action – The City is now taking tougher enforcement action against businesses that flout coronavirus restrictions. The public are also obviously less than impressed as I understand the Authorities have received more than 130 reports of non-compliance. Residents have report rule-breaking in shops, businesses and workplaces. Please do not be surprised that some public examples of some of the worst breaches appear in the press and media.

The City authorities have served 10 prohibition notices and four 4 fixed penalty notices (FPNs) including a £1,000 FPN being issued to the sole director of a company for breaching a prohibition notice.

Environmental Health officers are reviewing all reports and will continue to work closely with all businesses offering support and guidance in maintaining Covid safe environments. The City will also continue to take a joint enforcement approach with West Midlands Police to ensure businesses are operating safely and in line with current restrictions. Our Covid Support Advisors (CSA’s) will revisit 1,200 retail premises to monitor continued compliance throughout the city.

More than 3,000 inspections of business premises in Wolverhampton have already been completed with all complaints and concerns investigated by the council’s environmental health team.

On Friday The hub at Ashmore Park re-opened to play a new and valuable role here in our Community of Wednesfield North – Covid testing at ‘The Hub’

Wolverhampton’s fifth Covid-19 rapid testing centre, started up at The Hub at Ashmore Park, and welcomed their first visitors on Friday. The centre, is offering free testing to people without symptoms of Covid-19, and will be open from 10am-6pm five days a week (except Wednesdays and Sundays).

Rapid testing is also available at;

 *   The Civic Centre (Monday-Friday, 8am-7pm and Saturday and Sunday, 10am-6pm, except this Sunday, when the site is closed for maintenance)
 *   The Jamia Masjid Bilal on Newhampton Road West (10am-6.30pm daily)
 *   Pendeford Library (Monday-Friday, 10am-4pm, and Saturday and Sunday, 10am-6pm)
 *   St Joseph’s Church, Willenhall Road (Monday-Friday, 2pm-6pm)

No appointment is necessary. In addition, testing for people working in education and early years settings is available at Pendeford Library from 7am-10am and 4pm-6pm, Monday to Friday. Staff are asked to bring their work ID or a pay slip to confirm eligibility.

Rapid testing, which uses lateral flow technology to provide results in under an hour, can identify cases in people who don’t have any symptoms of the virus but who could still be infectious. Anyone who tests positive is then able to self-isolate to prevent spreading the virus onto others.

Finally I have been heavily involved in environmental issues this week, I will brief members on that in the coming days. Its also been a really bad week for losing friends .

Phil Bateman

Phil Bateman is Married to Mary and lives in Wednesfield North. He was a long serving local politician having served previously on the now defunct West Midlands County Council... read more