This is such a difficult time for all of us. There are now lockdowns and severe restrictions on everyone’s daily lives in all four nations of the UK.
No one can pretend that this latest series of lockdowns to fight the latest COVID surge is going to be any easier than the others – if anything, at this time of year with the short, cold days, it’s going to be even harder.
We also know what to expect this time around. But there’s one massive positive difference as we enter 2021 and that’s the vaccine program that is already underway. Two vaccines being rolled out which gives us all genuine hope that there is definite light at the end of this darkest of tunnels.
As before I’d like to reassure you that UNISON is continuing to serve, support and stand by our members – the key workers who will get us through this – as we have since this all started.
We may be operating in slightly different ways but we have learned from the past 10 months and our staff and activists continue to work around all the difficulties, to keep our members supported. They remain our priority.
So even though we know these new restrictions are tough, we will respect them because the virus has to be beaten and those fighting the virus have to be supported. There is no alternative. If we don’t all play our part, the NHS could be overwhelmed, with terrible consequences.
And while most of us will now remain safe at home, I know that our members, key staff in hospitals, schools, care homes and other essential services are out there doing their jobs, despite the risks.
I know many of you are running on empty – exhausted, often covering for colleagues off sick with COVID. But you continue to work in the face of the risks and the whole country is grateful for what you are doing.
Together we will get through this. Thanks to you, we will get through this.