Thursday, May 28, 2020

Joint Covid-19 visit to Newham Council Repairs & Maintenance depot (& future plans)

This morning at 8am I went on a joint walkabout with Cllr Shaban Mohammed, management and local Unite trade union reps of our Council Housing repairs (RMS) depot in Bridge Road E15. We were there to inspect the new social distancing arrangements in the depot, to listen to staff about any concerns and also for Shabs and I, on behalf of the Mayor and all Councillors, to thank staff for their truly fantastic response to the pandemic in Newham.

There has been many scary times during the last 9/10 weeks and the fact that so many of our front line housing staff left their families and turned up to provide essential emergency services is humbling and also proves the worth of having directly employed in-house public workers providing public services.

We have operated from Bridge Road a 24/7 emergency/health & safety repairs service, while also still turning empty void council properties into lettable homes for homeless families & carrying out vital technical visits and inspections.

While I have seen at our Council Dockside headquarters (which has been a distribution centre), RMS workers collecting and delivering tons of food, every day to our #HelpNewham hubs for shielding and vulnerable households.

Cllr Mohammad and I both want to visit and thank personally all our other housing service staff for their superb work (when safe to do so).

It was also good to see the new UPCV windows manufactured at the depot stacked up and waiting to be installed as soon as we can safely do so. We are all actively working out what we can do to counter a possible/probable next wave of Covid-19. 

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