Covid Legacy

Back to all Motions

2021 Virtual Special Local Government Service Group Conference
6 April 2021

The Covid-19 pandemic has highlighted what�s best about local government and its workforce. Always there ready to support our communities 365 days of the year, especially during times of national crisis.

It�s the same workforce who have had endure over ten years of austerity, cuts to pay and terms & conditions, but when called upon had to adapt to a totally new and unfamiliar environment � infection and transmission control, homeworking, health & safety implementation/monitoring, Registrars dealing with the bereaved in a scale never seen, operating in temporary mortuaries etc.

It was our workforce who ran the hubs that allowed all key workers to keep the country moving and working. Our waste workers, environment/trading standards, social care (caring for our vulnerable), social work staff, housing, cemeteries and crematoria workers, schools and early years� workers etc.. (far too many to mention) all pulling together to ensure the safety, health and wellbeing of our communities.

We say �were not going back to normal� and what we mean is the way our members were treated before. Employers need to know that they cannot simply keep arrangements in place in an attempt to save money through asset disposal etc; any new changes will require consultation and negotiation.

It is without doubt that many of our members’ mental health will have been impacted, domestic violence will have risen increasing the workload for our colleagues in social work and supporting services.

Our children in early years and schools have continued to be supported digitally and face-to-face despite the many risks involved.

It is clear that we are no longer the �poor relation� of public services but now the �distant relative� and forgotten about.

We call upon the Service Group Executive to:

1)Carry out a consultation with all regions on – what�s worked, what hasn�t and lessons learned through the pandemic;

2)Create a Charter for a Covid-19 Legacy designed for all of our local government areas;

3)Consult widely on the impact the pandemic has had on our members;

4)Consider what steps need to be taken to address the impact on our members’ mental health/wellbeing;

5)Create a plan/guidance to ensure that our members are not negatively impacted by Covid-19.