This is what the County Councils Network has been calling for, and the guideline outlines that councils and Local Resilience Forums will have to provide vulnerable people with social contact, help with their daily lives, and step in to provide emergency food when needed.
Below, the network responds to the guidance being issued to all local authorities.
“The recently issued guidance on how councils can protect those clinically most at risk to self-isolate is important. Preparatory work on arrangements to shield the most vulnerable has already taken place, but the real effort starts now. Lead authorities will mobilise Coronavirus response hubs and ensure that the hundreds of thousands of extremely vulnerable residents who are being told to self-isolate, get healthy meals delivered to their doors, and help with their daily lives.
“It is vital in two-tier areas that county and districts work in tandem in a clear and consistent way, building on their important respective roles. Under the direction of their Local Resilience Forums, counties will now collaborate at speed with all partners to work with the NHS and food distribution agencies to identify those most at risk.
“The government have rightly indicated the guidance will be reviewed as local plans are rolled out. This will take a great deal of planning and endeavour, but I am confident that county authorities and their local partners are up to the task. Already we are seeing huge efforts to redeploy staff to assist in the effort.”