From Alex McCrorie, Depute Chief Executive, East Lothian Council
Ahead of the September holiday weekend I would like to thank all staff for your continued commitment to making a difference in these unprecedented and challenging times.
Our priority has been to keep the people of East Lothian safe and informed and ensure that we continue to deliver the essential services. This we have managed to do and our collective efforts have been, and continue to be, appreciated by local communities and businesses.
Last week, the First Minister made it quite clear that the country continues to be in Phase 3 of the Scottish Government’s Route Map, and we all need to continue to follow health guidelines to help prevent the further spread of Covid-19. This is particularly important as we move towards winter when the NHS has to manage the usual seasonal rise in hospital admissions and increased need for GP care.
Last week also saw the launch of the new Protect Scotland app from NHS Scotland. Test and Protect is a free mobile phone app, easy to download and is designed to help us protect each other, reduce the spread of coronavirus and avoid further lockdown.
In East Lothian we have seen some localised positive Covid-19 cases and by working closely with health colleagues we have put into place the appropriate measures and support for those most vulnerable. The Council Management Team will continue to provide updates to staff as appropriate and we recognise and hugely appreciate that many members of staff are working in different ways or taking on new roles to provide continuity of services. That is why it’s so important that you all take some time off when you can.
To those staff off this weekend I hope you have a restful time and can switch off work pressures. Some of our colleagues of course will continue to work or be on call over this holiday period. In addition to my thanks to these colleagues I would also like to reiterate the importance of taking time off when suitable.
However you choose to enjoy your weekend please remain vigilant and follow current health guidelines around the importance of regular hand washing, avoiding crowded spaces, wearing face coverings where appropriate, physical distancing and seeking medical advice if you or a family member develop symptoms including a fever, loss of taste or smell or new continuous cough.