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Renewed warning of disruption to council services

By Alan Beresford

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MORAY Council’s chief executive has renewed a warning of disruption to council services due to coronavirus.

Moray Council chief executive Roddy Burns: "Too early to tell" how bad disruption to services will be. Picture: Daniel Forsyth
Moray Council chief executive Roddy Burns: "Too early to tell" how bad disruption to services will be. Picture: Daniel Forsyth

Staff absences related to positive cases of the virus, and self-isolation, are already impacting education settings, and it is likely that there will be a continued impact on the running of council services throughout January 2022 and possibly beyond.

The council’s Incident Management Team reconvened earlier this month as more details emerged on the omicron variant and its potential impact on the delivery of vital public services.

Senior managers are ensuring continuity plans are in place to safeguard critical services such as gritting, emergency road or housing repairs, education, waste, community care and others, but warned that further disruption may be unavoidable

Council Chief Executive Roddy Burns, said: “It’s too early to tell exactly what level of disruption there may be when the majority of our workforce returns after the festive break.

“But, like other councils, we’re preparing for a potential spike in absences and considering contingencies such as redeployment of staff to support priority services, just like we did earlier in the pandemic. Where possible, staff are homeworking to protect themselves, and also those who can’t work from home by reducing the risk of transmission in the workplace.

“We hope that this will help keep disruption to a minimum, make sure we can provide the most-needed services and protect our workforce.

“Like I said back in March 2020, this is a fast-moving situation and we will work hard to keep everyone up-to-date as it progresses.

“I urge all residents to follow health advice to look after themselves and their families; please get your booster vaccine if you haven’t already, and test regularly.

“If you haven’t received any Covid vaccine, it’s not too late to beginning protecting yourself and those around you, and I would urge you to attend the Fiona Elcock Vaccination Centre in Elgin to get that protection.

“I hope you have a happy and safe Christmas and new year, and my best wishes for 2022.”

Information about coronavirus restrictions and health information is available online on Scottish Government and NHS inform websites.

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