'Take all precautions' - Parkes Council plans for possible impacts of COVID-19

VITAL: Parkes Mayor Ken Keith OAM is urging Parkes residents to take all precautions, assume the virus is in the community, be kind and remain optimistic.
VITAL: Parkes Mayor Ken Keith OAM is urging Parkes residents to take all precautions, assume the virus is in the community, be kind and remain optimistic.

Parkes Shire Council continues to work with community, business and government agencies to implement measures to prevent the spread of COVID-19 in our shire.

Mayor Ken Keith OAM said council is working with NSW Western Area Health, Lachlan Area Command and Emergency Services to plan for possible impacts of the pandemic on our community.

Council was only being advised of cases within the local health district rather than local government areas, but the mayor urged people to take all precautions.

"It is confirmed that there are cases in the district as previously announced by NSW Health, and it's doubling every three to four days, so we must assume the virus is in the community and act accordingly," Cr Keith said.

"This is why we are urging residents to take the Federal and State Government's messages regarding social isolation and hygiene measures very seriously."

Council has introduced the following:

  • Closure of public meeting facilities and places of social gathering including the Parkes Shire Pools, Parkes Visitor Information Centre and Henry Parkes Museums, Rose Street Community Centre, Band Hall, Northparkes Oval function rooms;
  • Implementing social distancing measures within offices, work sites and customer service counters including limiting transactions at the administration office to EFT facilities only - no cash payments will be taken.
  • Consolidating public amenities and increasing level of servicing and cleaning;
  • Monitoring usage of playgrounds and fitness stations and undertaking daily cleaning;
  • Increasing social support for the business community and connecting them with government stimulus information and promoting revised levels of services for those still able to trade;
  • Isolating critical and vulnerable staff and encouraging those that can to work from home;
  • Utilising online meeting platforms;
  • Emphasising personal hygiene and inoculation;
  • Banning all travel including planned holidays;
  • Planning for possible further restrictions on customer service counters in the administration and planning offices.

"While keeping our social distance, we still want to instill the message of connectedness," Cr Keith said.

"Our community must stick together, support each other and be kind. Don't forget to call, text or skype your friends, family and check in on your neighbour.

"Think of others when you are buying supplies, don't panic buy, use common sense so that there is enough to go around and then no one will have to go without.

"We are all in this together.

"Also try to stay optimistic. While this virus has had a tremendous impact on the health of people worldwide, less than 1 per cent of people tested for COVID-19 actually have a positive result, and the majority that do test positive are recovering safely at home."

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