Coronavirus

Latest information

Last reviewed: Wednesday 8 July 2020 at 4.30pm

Please use these links for the latest advice from the Government and the NHS.

A number of Council services have closed or changed due to Covid-19. They are listed here.

Solihull Library Service - Click and Collect -     More time slots for library book returns

In response to customer requests, Solihull Library Service has organised more time slots for residents to safely drop their library books back.

Time slots are:

  • 10am – 1pm on Wednesday 15 July at Balsall Common, Castle Bromwich, Hobs Moat and Knowle Libraries. 
  • 2 – 4pm on Friday 24 July, and every Friday afternoon thereafter, at The Core, Chelmsley Wood and Shirley Libraries. 

These time slots are just for dropping off books – library staff will not be available to help with any other services. For further information see here.

Knowle High Street – temporary 20mph speed limit

As part of the Council’s emergency measures to facilitate social distancing and safe access to local retail facilities, a temporary 20 mile per hour speed limit will be introduced along Knowle High Street from Thursday 9 July 2020. For further information see here.

Parks and Open Spaces

In line with government guidance, playgrounds and outdoor gyms in parks are now open. We understand that children have been patiently waiting for our playgrounds to reopen but please observe social distancing guidelines, take your litter home and play safe. For further information see here.

CONTAIN: working together to manage Covid-19

As part of the Contain phase of the COVID-19 response, Warwickshire County Council, Coventry City Council and Solihull Metropolitan Borough Council have developed joint Outbreak Control Plans which sets out how we will work together to monitor COVID-19 levels, prevent the spread of the disease and manage outbreaks when they occur.

The Plans set out how we will work with Public Health England (West Midlands), the NHS and local communities to manage COVID working alongside the NHS Test and Trace programme.

Solihull’s Local Outbreak Implementation Plan has now been published, you can access it here.

All the Local Outbreak Plans and information on how we are keeping our communities safer can be found at www.staysafecsw.info

For more information on the Coventry, Solihull and Warwickshire Beacon Programme please contact newsteam@warwickshire.gov.uk

Parking Charges

Parking charges in Council-operated car parks and on-street parking bays in Solihull town centre, Knowle and Shirley resumed on Wed 1 July. More information here.

Domestic abuse

This is a difficult and challenging time for everyone however there is still help, advice and support for anyone that is experiencing domestic abuse. If you or someone else is in immediate danger, please call 999 and ask for the police. Silent calls will work if you are not safe to speak – use the Silent Solution system and call 999. If you can’t speak, you will be diverted to an automated silent solution system. You can press 55 to be transferred to the local police force. Find details of where and how to get free, confidential advice and support here.

COVID-19 - time to quit smoking

If you smoke now is the time to quit to help you stay healthy and stay out of hospital.

Coronavirus (COVID-19) is a respiratory infection; it affects the lungs and airways. Smoking damages your lungs and weakens your immune system, increasing your risk of developing life-threatening complications from COVID 19.

Smokers are also more likely to need treatment for other serious conditions such as heart attacks, stroke, diabetes, cancer and emphysema.

Smoking of any kind,  including shisha, cannabis or any other substances increases your risk of developing complications from COVID 19.

Smokers should take every effort to protect those around them from exposure to secondhand smoke indoors, which poses risks particularly to children and those with existing health conditions. 

If you smoke, quitting is one of the best ways to protect yourself and others, and reduce your need to use the NHS.

It’s never too late to quit. From the moment you quit your body starts to repair itself.
For more information and help to stop smoking contact the service on 0800 599 9880 (free phone) .  More information here.

Coronavirus outbreak FAQs: what you can and can't do

The government has published staying safe outside your home guidance on what the latest rules to help contain COVID 19 mean. This page sets out key FAQ to inform the public and help you prepare for these changes.

COVID-19 research in Black, Asian and minority ethnic communities

People from all minority ethnic groups (apart from Chinese and mixed-race groups) are at greater risk of becoming very sick with COVID-19 than the white population in the UK. In particular, black men and women are nearly twice as likely as white people to die from COVID-19. We need to understand why and tackle this urgently through health research.

The National Institute for Health Research NIHR, as part of the 'Be Part of Research COVID-19 information', has set up a section on their website where BAME communities can go to learn more about what research involves, how to find studies happening in their area and how they can become involved in COVID-19 research as well as other studies.

You can find the full details here.

How COVID-19 is affecting care and support for adults

The Coronavirus pandemic has created additional demand for care and support services in Solihull. Working practices have had to change significantly as a result. Our social care services are also taking into account national guidance, for example, relating to social distancing.

We want to minimise the impact to the people we support as much as possible. Changes to your care plan may be needed, for example, if you usually attend a day centre. We may ask you to have a phone or video call rather than a visit from a social worker.

If you have any questions about your support please get in touch with us.  You can email Adult Social Care on ccadults@solihull.gov.uk or ring us on 0121 704 8007.

Communities and Solihull Council working together to tackle COVID-19

Funerals update – Solihull Council will allow more people to attend funerals from Monday 13 July

Solihull Council will allow more people to attend funerals from 13 July. The decision has been taken after careful monitoring and in line with government guidance.

Full details can be found here.

The Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme

The Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme is now open for applications. Employers can now go online to claim cash grants worth up to 80% of wages, capped at £2,500 a month per worker.

5,000 HMRC staff will operate the scheme, which is expected to help thousands of firms across the UK. All of the details can be found here.

Furthermore, a new tool has been launched to help you find coronavirus financial support for your business. You may be eligible for loans, tax relief and cash grants; this support finder will help you to see what support is available for you and your business: https://bit.ly/3cv0yHR

Finally, the Chancellor of the Exchequer has announced a new Billion-pound support package for innovative firms hit by Coronavirus. The package includes a £500 million investment fund for high-growth companies impacted by the crisis, made up of funding from the Government and the private sector. More details can be found here.

Schools

For the current information on schools please see here.

Volunteer

If you want to volunteer (and it is safe for you to do so) and you can’t find a local group covering your area, then you can ring us at ‘Here 2 Help Solihull’ on 0121 704 6811 or email here2helpsolihull@solihull.gov.uk

Here are five ways to support yourself, your loved ones and your community – together we can help to keep safe, keep calm and keep well. Please take time to read and use this handy advice sheet produced by local communities and Solihull Council:

Here2Help

Whether you need help with getting food because you’re self-isolating or some financial advice, the Here2Help page has some useful information and contact details for you.

We have information about:

Safeguarding vulnerable adults and children

Please be assured that we will continue to provide safeguarding support to vulnerable adults and children. Please contact us in the usual way, especially if you have a concern about someone’s welfare. These links provide more information:

Financial support for individuals affected by COVID-19

There's financial help available if you've had an income drop as a result of COVID-19; including losing your job, losing contracts or your household income reducing because someone else in the household is self-isolating or in hospital.

Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme

Check if you could be covered by the Corona Virus job retention scheme.

Council Tax

If you are out of work, on reduced pay or on a low income, you maybe eligible for council tax reduction.

We appreciate, that during these unprecedented times, many residents will be concerned about bills including their council tax. You can find more information and help with your council tax here.

If you are  experiencing severe financial hardship or have experienced a crisis or event through no fault of your own and you have claimed any statutory exemption or discount that is available, you may also be eligible for a council tax discretionary reduction in liability.

NEW - Emergency fund for family carers

In partnership with the Carers Trust Solihull we have set up an emergency fund to support family carers who are struggling during the Covid-19 crisis.  Read more here.

Hardship fund for care workers

We have set up a special fund to support care workers who are experiencing financial hardship during the Covid-19 crisis. Read more about the fund here.

Financial support for businesses affected by COVID-19

Discretionary Business Grants

Payments will be made to all eligible businesses by Wednesday 3 July and an email will be sent to confirm once individual payments have been processed.

NEW - Support to the Adult Social Care Provider Market

In addition to the Council’s general business support we have taken further steps to support providers of care to adults with care and support needs to meet the additional costs and challenges presented by Covid-19.   Read about our care home support plan here.

Retail Relief

Following the recent Government announcements, Expanded Retail Relief will give eligible businesses 100% relief from their business rates in 2020/21. Further details can be found on our business rates page where you can also find information on cash grants for small businesses.

Due to the exceptional high volumes of grants being processed we aim to respond and process the majority of form submissions within approximately 10 working days. It is anticipated that if we are provided with all required information it will be sooner than this, however complex cases may take longer. All payments will be by BACS and letters will be sent once the payment has been made.

Please bear with us and only make further contact if you have not heard from us within 14 working days from your submission. If you do need to contact us please email businessgrants@solihull.gov.uk

The latest advice for businesses can be found here:

Sexual health services

During the Coronavirus lockdown period the Umbrella Sexual Health Service delivered by University Hospitals Birmingham is still available for Birmingham & Solihull residents. Find out more here or on the Umbrella website.

West Midlands Combined Authority guidance

Covid-19 Workplace Risk Assessment

In compliance with health and safety legislation and recent government guidance Solihull Council, as an employer, is required to assess and manage the risks of Covid-19 to our employees and customers. We have a legal responsibility to protect our employees and others from risks to their health and safety and share any findings with our workforce.
In line with the guidance, the government expectation is that organisations of our size publish details of these risk assessments on our website. To meet that obligation we have created a comprehensive risk assessment framework involving numerous assessments at different levels (building, service & vulnerable individuals) and produced a Covid-19 Secure Workplace Declaration.

This explains how we are managing our risks within the organisation providing further information about our approach and the assessments that have been completed at a building/service/ individual level.

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