A report covering how the council quickly adapted to Covid -19 was presented at Merton’s cabinet meeting on Monday.

The action taken by staff, allocation of financial support and the council’s key role to help create one of London’s first volunteer hubs were just a few of the things highlighted.

The Leader of the Council, Councillor Stephen Alambritis, said: “The council’s rapid reaction to the unprecedented challenges and its work to adapt services has been hugely impressive.

"I am particularly proud of the way the community has worked with the council to help make the borough safe.

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"There is still a long way to go and the council is now working hard on recovery plans so we can continue to support our residents and businesses every step of the way.”

Work across the council to meet the challenges of the life under lockdown, included:

-6959 'extra- vulnerable' residents were contacted to make sure all their needs in regard to food, medicine and social contact were met.

-Playing a key role in setting up one of London’s first community response hubs in partnership with Merton Voluntary Service Council, Merton Clinical Commissioning Group and other key voluntary groups from across the borough.

-Urgently sourcing Personal Protective Equipment, for around 70 social care workers and to meet the emergency requirements of 10 care homes.

-Working closely with schools to ensure that vulnerable children are being safe-guarded and essential social work home visits continued.

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-Successfully securing emergency accommodation for 52 rough sleepers, and help them access support for mental health, drug and alcohol issues if needed.

-94 members of staff were urgently deployed to take part in the emergency response

-Swiftly delivering payments of the Business Support Grants for small and medium businesses affected by the Covid-19 crisis- more than 95% of the allocated funding has now been delivered totalling £26.79 million.

-The council’s regulatory services worked to ensure compliance to the new regulations which came into force with the closure of non-essential shops, pubs, restaurants and other venues.

-Licensing and Trading Standards Officers have been undertaking checks to ensure that business are trading safely and within the guidelines.

-The number of complaints and enquiries received by the service during lockdown increased by 25 per cent residents concerned about noise, nuisance and social distancing.

-Emergency transport response, providing more space for walking and cycling.  

-Understanding the financial challenge to the authority and working with government to get additional support