I want to begin by offering my sincere condolences to the family and friends of the two people who were tragically killed in the explosion in King Street, Southall, earlier this week.
Thanks to the emergency services, council officers, community organisations and individuals who responded to this incredibly difficult incident and worked so hard and are still doing so to help all the residents impacted by it.
The latest weekly figures up until 18 October, for new COVID-19 cases in the borough are 552, that is 161.5 per 100,000 of population.
That puts us equal second highest in London alongside our neighbours Hammersmith and Fulham, just below Hackney. This is a 16.7% increase from the week before.
London as a whole and 23 of the boroughs are now over the 100 cases per 100,000 mark and there is a continued rise in cases right across our city.
This is why we have moved into the tier 2 ‘high’ category a week ago as a city, with the new restrictions around no household mixing indoors except if you are in a support bubble.
I am still of the view that two to three-week circuit breaker over half-term for the whole country would have been better but this is where we are.
So just to remind people that households should not be meeting in private homes, or in public indoor spaces, like pubs, bars, or restaurants.
It is really important for people to follow this rule, in Ealing it is this interaction between households that is spreading the virus.
Another key reason for the virus spreading is the failure of the government’s national Test and Trace system even the Prime Minister has now admitted it is not working and it certainly isn’t world-beating.
I’ve been calling for local authorities using the expertise of our Public Health team to be given both the funding and responsibility for our local test and trace effort to tackle the spread of the virus.
Under the current system we will be very shortly introducing our own local tracing system to improve the inadequate national system.
It is also critical that when people get COVID symptoms, test positive, or come in to close contact with someone who tests positive that they isolate themselves along with their household if you do not isolate in these circumstances you could get a fine and you will be spreading the virus.
Myself and the director of Public Health for Ealing, have sent out a letter to everyone in the borough explaining what the current tier 2 restrictions are please look out for that, it will drop over the weekend and early next week on your doorsteps.
Now, today we have launched our new online platform to help residents have their say on Low Traffic Neighbourhoods we know people have strong feelings on LTNs and that they have felt unable to have their say, be it in favour, or against.
Introducing this online Commonplace platform as part of the live six month consultation, will give people that opportunity to have their say so we encourage people to use Commonplace platform, give us your views you can access it via the council’s website.
Finally, I would like to wish everyone a happy Navratri this weekend and ask that those celebrating do so virtually and don’t visit each others homes.
This also applies to other upcoming events and festivals, like Halloween and Bonfire night and Diwali, Remembrance Sunday, let’s all follow the rules. Keep Ealing Safe and save lives.