Coronavirus update - Friday 16 October

The news has been dominated this week by the new Covid alert levels that the government has announced for the country.

Local Covid alert levels set out information for local authorities, residents and workers about what to do and how to manage the outbreak in their area.

These are the tiers: 

Tier 1 (medium risk)
- National restrictions apply – rule of six, 10pm curfew and hands, face and space

 Tier 2 (high risk)
- All indoor household or support bubble mixing banned
- Rule of six applies to outdoor mixing (including private gardens)

Tier 3 (very high risk)
- Bars and pubs closed
- Household and support bubble mixing banned in all settings
- Rule of six applies only in outside public spaces
- No indoor socialising (restaurants allowed to open until 10pm)
- No travel outside the area to be permitted
- Possible forced closure of casinos, gyms and betting shops (agreed locally)

None of the tiers require the closure of non-essential retail, schools or universities.

Plymouth comes under Tier 1 medium risk. To find out more about what you can and can’t do, read this.

One thing we should all be doing is following the basic hygiene steps to help prevent the spread of the virus:

  • HANDS – Wash your hands regularly and for 20 seconds.
  • FACE – Wear a face covering in indoor settings where social distancing may be difficult and where you will come into contact with people you do not normally meet.
  • SPACE – Stay two metres apart from people you do not live with where possible, or one metre with extra precautions in place.

If you are due to be visited by a member of our staff – a housing officer or repairs operative for example – please remember the following:

  • We ask our staff to observe two-metre social distancing with residents where possible.
  • We will ask you if you or anyone in your home is suffering from Covid-19 symptoms before we arrive.
  • When a repair is being carried out at your home please move to a different room and allow our operatives to complete the repair. 

You can protect yourself and your loved ones with the official NHS Covid-19 contact tracing app for England and Wales.

If you have Coronavirus symptoms (high temperature, new or continuous cough or loss or change to your sense of smell or taste) you can get a free test but you should only get a test if you have these symptoms.

There’s information on the Test and Trace service here.

Rent and payment changes

We’re committed to making sure that we can help you so it’s important to contact us as soon as possible if you have any money worries. We’d like to reassure our residents that we will not evict anyone due to a loss of income as a result of Coronavirus. Call us on 0808 230 6500. 

Yesterday was International Credit Union Day. Credit Unions encourage members to save regularly, provide loans at low interest rates and help members in need of financial advice and assistance.

They are an excellent alternative to unscrupulous loan sharks.

Find out more about the City of Plymouth Credit Union.

Food Plymouth

We have been working with Food Plymouth. They have put together an online resource to help people who need to access emergency food. This could be through lack of funds or not being able to get out to the shops.

You can find out more here.

Fiver Fest

Now more than ever we need to support local businesses.

Plymouth independent shops are joining with more than 100 high streets across the UK to put on Fiver Fest, which will see a host of special £5 offers from 10-24 October in our locally-run shops and eateries.

Getting in touch with us

If you go abroad on holiday and need to quarantine when you get back when we’re due to make a visit, please tell us by calling 0808 230 6500.

Our Repairs lines are open for routine repairs.

You can use the Report a Repair form on the MyPCH portal, talk to us on the web chat function on our website or fill out a contact form.

We’re also on Facebook and Twitter.

Our city centre shop, Plumer House and the Beacon remain closed until further notice.

You can keep up to date with the latest news from PCH in the autumn edition of In Touch, which is being posted to residents next week.

Sheltered schemes

We strongly advise people not to gather in groups anywhere on our sheltered housing schemes, and to follow the Government’s Rule of Six for any social gatherings anywhere.

Visitors should be attending for essential visits only and we are asking that all visitors – and our staff – wear face coverings. 

We’re assessing our communal rooms so we know what work needs to be done to reopen them, and will take the new Government guidance into account. Please note that communal rooms remain closed at this time.

Homes at the Heart 

We’re part of a national campaign calling for a once-in-a-generation investment in social housing. 

Homes have never been more important to us than they have been during the coronavirus crisis. For some people, home has been a sanctuary and everyone deserves a safe, secure and comfortable place to call home. Not just now, but always. Investing in social housing makes this possible, boosts the economy, creates jobs and improves people’s lives when our nation needs it the most. 

Follow our campaign on Facebook and Twitter

Other places to turn to for help

We’re working with police teams on reports of anti-social behaviour which you can report to us on 0808 230 6500 or 0800 028 7377 (out of hours). 

If things are getting too much, don’t suffer in silence. You can contact the National Domestic Abuse Helpline on 0808 200 0247 or the Plymouth Domestic Abuse Service on 0800 458 2558. There’s also information here.

Thank you for your continued support and patience, and stay safe.