With the number of COVID-19 cases in Warrnambool rising and several local businesses and services impacted, Warrnambool Mayor Cr Richard Ziegeler is encouraging everyone to stay patient, be understanding and to begin planning in the event that they contract COVID-19 or are required to isolate.
“We’ve seen already a number of businesses in the city that have had to temporarily close or reduce their hours because staff are either testing positive or are required to isolate,” he said.
“This trend is likely to continue, so please be understanding, stay flexible and always be kind.
“Council staff are part of the community, just like everyone else so the number of staff we have to deliver services may soon be reduced.
“Although we are doing everything to minimise any disruption to our services, initially, some Home and Community Care clients may be contacted to discuss rescheduling a service they receive. Services may include Meals on Wheels, Home Care, Home Maintenance, Respite and Social Support Services.
“Any changes will most likely be temporary and normal practices should resume when the difficult period is over.”
From January 10, the Archie Graham Centre will close at 3pm. Patrons participating in afternoon activities will be able to leave after 3pm by prior arrangement.
Cr Ziegeler also encouraged everyone to have a COVID plan in place.
“There are practical things you can do now to make sure you have the things you need at home if you or your family need to isolate,” he said.
“Make sure you have a few days' supply of essential items, especially prescription medicines and talk to family, friends and neighbours about how you can support each other if one household has to isolate.
“If you have no way of getting help, please call the Coronavirus Hotline on 1800 675 398. Alternatively, you can call Council on 5559 4800 and our staff will endeavour to connect you to a service that can help.
“Warrnambool led the charge when it came to getting vaccinated as early as possible and our high vaccination rates will give us the best possible chance of avoiding the most severe health impacts of COVID-19 so we are in a much better position to continue to live and work with COVID-19 in the community than we would have been previously.
“With so many of us getting vaccinated at the first opportunity, it means that booster shots are either due or will be soon. This is one of the best ways you can protect yourself, your family and your community, so please book in for your COVID-19 booster as soon as you are eligible.
“Continue to follow the COVID-safe principles of wearing a mask indoors, social distancing where possible and checking in wherever you go with the Services Victoria app.
“I’m proud that Warrnambool’s capacity for community cooperation and compassion stands us in good stead during this time.”