Leader's weekly update transcript - 23/12/21
Hello,this year began with a national lockdown and is ending with more concerns about very high COVID-19 cases and the Omicron variant which is very transmissible. It has been a difficult time and we could not have predicted that we would still be battling the virus at the year end.
COVID cases are still high here so if we're seeing family and friends for Christmas, we need to do a lateral flow test beforehand, so we don't spread the virus to our loved ones.
If you develop COVID-19 symptoms over Christmas, the town's testing site at Falaise Road will be open and the mobile testing unit will also be at Pelham Place car park between Christmas and the new year.
It's important that everyone gets a booster and that those who haven't yet had two jabs get them. There's another vaccination centre at the Conquest Hospital now as well as the Hastings Centre and town hall ones.
You can find more about how, and where to get your vaccine locally over the Christmas period on our website.
We have been pushing all year to make vaccines more accessible in Hastings and we will continue to work with the NHS to ensure everyone who wants their vaccinations can have them.
Even without the added pressure of COVID-19, the NHS is always very busy in the winter and with the national drive to get everyone boosted quickly this has led to even more pressure for our health workers. Thanks to everyone who has helped deliver the vaccination programme this year (NHS staff, volunteers from community groups and council officers) for all their hard work and dedication.
There will be some changes to council services, including waste collection, over Christmas and our offices will be officially closed from tomorrow lunchtime until 4 January but our online services will still be available 24/7. There's all the information including about food supplies for those who need support on our website at www.hastings.gov.uk/my-council/christmas_information.
Some council officers will be working over the Christmas holidays doing essential work and others will be on call ready to respond to any emergencies. With ever decreasing funding, local government officers are working harder than ever and have coped well with the increased workload brought about by COVID-19. Thank you to all our council officers.
I am proud of what we have been able to achieve this year and next year we will work to continue to deliver more of the projects in our corporate plan.
Christmas can be a hard time for many people and thank you to everyone supporting and looking after others in our town. Please take care and remember to be kind and look after each other. I hope you have a safe and happy Christmas as we all look forward to a more positive new year.
Council Leader's vlogs