The West of England Combined Authority and Local Enterprise Partnership are committed to supporting our region’s residents, businesses and employees.
We are working closely with government, our council partners and other organisations to help share important information and help you find the support you need.
Public safety is the top priority. We are urging people to stay at home to slow the spread of coronavirus (COVID-19) and protect vulnerable people across our region.
— West of England Combined Authority (@WestofEnglandCA) March 22, 2020
The Government has now introduced three new measures:
- Requiring people to stay at home, except for very limited purposes (more details below)
- Closing non-essential shops and community spaces
- Stopping all gatherings of more than two people in public
The full guidance on staying at home and away from others is available here: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/full-guidance-on-staying-at-home-and-away-from-others/full-guidance-on-staying-at-home-and-away-from-others
Everyone must comply with these new measures, which are effective immediately. The Government will look again at these measures in three weeks, and relax them if the evidence shows this is possible.
Businesses and employees
We’re working hard to support our regional businesses and their employees.
Government has put in place a significant package of support for individuals and businesses whose finances are affected by COVID-19.
We’re talking to businesses of all sizes, answering their queries and helping them to find the latest information and advice. We’re also capturing their concerns and sharing back with Government to ensure their voices are heard.
If your business has been impacted by coronavirus, the West of England Combined Authority’s Growth Hub can help answer your queries and signpost you to the latest information and advice. Please visit: wearegrowth.co.uk/ for regular updates.
Future Bright – supporting our residents
Our career coaching and support service, Future Bright, is still active during the coronavirus outbreak.
Our team of experienced career coaches is available to support residents in-work and receiving benefits or tax credits. During this difficult time, we are providing providing one-to-one career coaching and support using telephone and online tools to keep participants and coaches in touch safely.
Future Bright is available to residents who are in any form of paid work – including zero hours contracts and self-employment – in Bath & North East Somerset, Bristol and South Gloucestershire.
Call for ventilator production
Any businesses who can help with the Prime Minister’s call for ventilator production please contact @businessgov helpline on 0300 456 3565 or email email@example.com
Call for supply of COVID-19 antigen testing kit
Businesses in the life sciences sector are being asked to help increase the supply of antigen testing kits for COVID-19.
The Government’s requirement is for commercial supply of the following:
- Full testing packages (specification via the following link: https://www.biacovid19.org/latest-news-and-analysis.html)
- Any of the separate components within the testing package
- Any alternative tests government should be considering
Any organisations that can supply for sale any or all of the above should email firstname.lastname@example.org as soon as possible.
Supporting adult education providers
We are working with education providers to help minimise disruption to learners.
Providers are being encouraged to ensure they have planning and actions in place to mitigate against any potential impact on their ability to deliver adult education services. We are continuing to monitor the situation and follow national guidance from Public Health England and the Department for Education. We are also considering the approach taken by other combined authorities and the Education and Skills Funding Agency (ESFA) to ensure consistency as much as possible.
We are working with our councils and transport operators in the region to ensure that we have the right services in place to support key workers and others who need to travel.
As a result of coronavirus and news that some supermarkets are opening just for older people or those with a disability for their first hour of the day, we have already extended the hours when concessionary bus passes can be used. Time restrictions for use of the Diamond Travelcard (concessionary pass) have now been relaxed, so people can travel free at any time on journeys starting in the WECA and North Somerset areas.
People are reminded to follow Government advice about travel and avoid non-essential use of public transport. For further travel advice visit: https://travelwest.info/travel_update/coronavirus-travel-advice