Thank you for the Big Conversation survey on the impact of lockdown. As an NHS Responder volunteer, most of my calls have been from the council estates near me in Southey. I have been asked to help many people living on their own with serious health conditions, often in isolation with limited contact and help from close neighbours. Many vulnerable people clearly need ongoing help, not just volunteers to help them through the Covid-19 crisis.

Your survey showed many people want higher spending on social care and hospital services.

This crisis has highlighted benefits to companies and employees of mixing working from home and the office, cutting both commuter traffic and air pollution. Fewer people living on council estates will have jobs where working from home is possible, so access to safe public transport is vital. A priority must be to rebuild public confidence in the safety of bus, tram and train travel so we don’t return to commuter gridlock.

Services must improve as well. Bus privatisation and deregulation has completely failed to meet the needs of communities, residents and visitors across South Yorkshire. Services must be democratically accountable to communities and under public ownership.

Eamonn Ward
Hillsborough Green Party

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