Coronavirus Update 27th May 2020

Latest Coronavirus Update for Bristol (27th May 2020)



All Bristol licensed vehicles have been asked to follow these guidelines: 

  1. Only work if you are not putting anyone at risk.
  2. Ask new customers if they have any symptoms of Covid-19 before you agree to carry them.
  3. Wipe down all surfaces likely to be touched, with disinfectant or alcohol hand gel before starting your shift and after each and every journey.
  4. Clean the vehicle thoroughly between shifts.
  5. Carry a suitable alcohol based hand gel and/or wipes.
  6. Wash your hands with soap and water for 20 seconds.
  7. Provide a suitable alcohol based hand gel for customer use prior to entry into the vehicle.
  8. Avoid touching your face, and if you have to cough or sneeze use a tissue.
  9. Provide plastic bags for customers.
  10. If carrying more than one customer, ensure they are from the same household.   
  11. If passengers are not from the same household you must only carry one passenger and refuse to carry the remaining passengers.
  12. Increase ventilation by keeping windows open where possible.
  13. Always wash your hands or use sanitizing gel.
  14. Wear a face covering as a safety measure.
  15. If your vehicle breaks down, you and your customers should get out of the vehicles if safe to do so and stay two metres apart pending recovery or another car arriving to complete the journey.
  16. Consider getting contactless/card payment facilities.
  17. Ask customers to sit facing away from you if possible, and avoid physical contact with a customer.
  18. Where it is not possible for customers to sit away, request they sit in the rear passenger seat behind the front passenger seat.
  19. Passengers with accessibility requirements: drivers are still under the same legal obligation to provide reasonable assistance to passengers who may require it.

“It is crucial that we do all we can to protect both taxi drivers and their passengers in this crisis, and so I welcome these guidelines which are designed to do that in Bristol.  Taxis are also the only public transport available to many Disabled and older people and I am really pleased that, in Bristol, we are doing what we can to make them as safe as possible.”

Councillor Ruth Pickersgill, chairperson of Bristol City Council’s Public Safety and Protection Committee

Recycling centres

Recycling centres are now open 8.45am – 6.45pm.

Coronavirus rules for using the recycling centres:

  • Only one person out of car or small van (no transit vans or trailers) at a time unless two are necessary.
  • Licence plates with last number 0,2,4,6,8 can visit on Thursday 28 May and 30 May.
  • Licence plates with last number 1,3,5,7,9 can visit on Friday 29 May and 31 May.
  • Take photo ID and proof of residency in Bristol (utility/council tax bill).


  1. All non-essential sellers – from department stores to small independent shops – can reopen in England from 15 June, if they put in place social distancing measures.
  • Outdoor markets and car showrooms can reopen from 1 June, if they are “Covid secure”.

But the government has said these dates could change if the number of people catching coronavirus increases.

Garden centres have already reopened in England, Wales and Northern Ireland.  DIY chains – some of which stayed open throughout the lockdown – have also reopened many of their shops.

What about hairdressers, pubs and cafes?

Pubs, restaurants, hairdressers, hotels, cinemas and places of worship will open from 4 July at the earliest, as long as they can meet social distancing measures.

However, indoor public spaces such as beauty salons, where social distancing may be difficult, could reopen ”significantly later”, depending on when the rate of infection goes down.

Support Hub for Older People

The Support Hub from Bristol Ageing Better has been set up to help older people and their families cope with the impact of the coronavirus, Covid-19 in Bristol. We provide a range of practical, emotional and social support. Our new members include Carers Support Centre, Nilaari, The Exercise Club, Bristol Black Carers, Pocklington Trust, Re-engage, and Bristol Bears Rugby.

We are a growing partnership of voluntary organisations that already work to support older people in Bristol. We’re offering practical support with errands, as well as specialist information and advice on benefits & allowances, housing and social care, phone befriending, social activities by phone, online or post, as well as referrals for professional counselling for those who need a higher level of emotional support including bereavement counselling.

We are keen to support as many people as we can but we are aware that there are many support and signposting services available which older people can access and are keen to ensure we complement what others are doing without duplicating. Our offer is a ‘one-stop’ hub with support from staff who are DBS checked and who have specialist skills and experience in meeting the needs of older people.

If you would like to refer someone for any of these services, please come directly through the Support Hub helpline:

0117 929 7537
For more information about the Support Hub, please visit:

Support the Deaf Community – Sign this letter in support.

During the Coronavirus outbreak, we have seen an increase in people wearing masks to protect themselves from particles in the air. However, this isn’t accessible for the deaf community, who need to be able to see people’s mouth when they are communicating, so they can lipread.

Read the letter here (BSL version. available in download) –

To get your name added to the letter, email giving them permission to do so. 

Motability’s top tips for keeping entertained in Lockdown

The Motability Scheme helps you get mobile by exchanging your higher rate mobility allowance to lease a new affordable car, Wheelchair Accessible Vehicle, scooter or powered wheelchair. While at present they are unable to offer their services. They are sharing their top tips with customers on how to keep fit and entertained during Lockdown.

8 Accessible Virtual Tours

Helen Dolphin’s Guide to indoor gardening

Keeping Fit during Isolation (chair/seated edition)

Survey: Impact of COVID–19 on Health and Social Care Services at home, in Bristol

Healthwatch Bristol, an independent champion for people using health and social care.  We are conducting a survey amongclients/patients receiving care at home in Bristol, and their carers or family members. 

We need to find out how COVID-19 has been affecting their care, especially what is working well and what is not. Their responses will be used to help service providers to tackle issues that matter most.

Please could you help us disseminate this survey as widely as possible to patients, carers and family members.  If you are in the target group yourself, we would really appreciate hearing about your experience by filling in the survey.

Here is the link  or scan the QR code

The deadline for this survey is 1st June 2020

The online survey is easy to fill in on your phone, tablet or laptop.

If you need a paper version/s or more information, please contact:

Acomo Oloya   07857 055804  

Julie Bird          07944 369180  

Human Rights – How can we unlock them?

Training session

BIHR have teamed up with Learning Disability England to provide a free online session for people with learning disabilities, autistic people & family to learn how human rights can help

you build & keep an independent life.

Date: Friday 22nd May, (Zoom meeting)

Time: 10 – 11 am

Find out more here.

NHS Responder Volunteer Scheme

If you are currently not supported and need some help with shopping, a prescription collection or a friendly chat then our NHS Volunteer Responders are ready to help. 

Please note, you should only get in touch if you fall into one of the following categories:

a.   People aged 70 years and older with underlying health  conditions;

b.   If you are in the ‘extremely vulnerable’ to COVID 19 group and have been sent a letter asking you to shield from the virus;

c.   People who are pregnant; 

d.   If you are newly socially vulnerable as a result of COVID 19;

e.   People who have a disability as defined by the Equality Act 2010;

f.   Others with high-risk conditions could include:

– People with chronic lung disease or moderate to severe asthma,

– People with serious heart conditions,

– People who are immunocompromised including because of cancer treatment,

– People of any age with severe obesity e.g. body mass  index (BMI) over 40.

Certain underlying medical conditions, particularly if not well controlled, such as those with diabetes, dementia, renal failure, or liver disease might also be at risk.

If you meet any of these specific criteria, or you consider yourself vulnerable for another reason (for instance, you have Parkinson’s, Epilepsy or are vulnerable due to a mental health condition) and you need help collecting shopping, medicines or would like a telephone ‘check in and chat’ please call 0808 196 3646 (8am to 8pm) to arrange volunteer support.

Can carers make a referral on someone else’s behalf?

As someone with caring responsibilities, you are able to make a referral for someone that you care for that meets the above criteria. You can also make a referral for yourself, if this support helps you to continue in your caring role. Please call us on 0808 196 3646 to make a referral.

For more information or to read our FAQs, please click here

Changes to Lockdown Rules

1.      Working – If you can work from home you must continue to do so.  But, if you can’t because you work in building or manufacturing jobs, you can return to work from today (13th May).  However, you should only do this if your employer has made sure that you will be safe.  If you are concerned that you won’t be safe you should not work.

2.      Furloughing scheme to continue

The government’s scheme for workers will now continue until the end of October.  From August, the scheme will continue, whatever type of work you do, but with more choice for employers to bring staff back to work (see above).
The scheme will  continue to cover 80% of furloughed workers wages.

3.      Contact with friends and relatives – From today (13th May) in England, two people from different households will be able to meet in outdoor settings – such as parks – but they must stay more than 2m (6ft) apart.  This means you can now meet up with family or friends, as long as there is just the two of you and you keep two metres apart.

4.      Enforcement – The government has said the fines for people who break social distancing rules will be much higher.  However, at the moment we don’t know how much they will be.

4.      Exercise – From 13th May people in England will be able to spend more time outdoors, if it is “for leisure purposes”.  There will be no limit to how much exercise people can do but they still need to follow the social distancing rules.

You can find the full information and more on the government’s website.


Furloughing scheme – This means employers who employ people who cannot work because of coronavirus can get a grant from the government that will pay nearly all of those employees wages.

Enforcement – Enforcement is when people are made to keep to the rules, and punished if they don’t.

Leisure purposes – This means things like walking, having a picnic, playing golf, fishing, cycling, running, photography, etc.  But, most sport is still not allowed.

Remembering Manjeet Kaur

Manjeet Kaur died on Saturday 25th April in Manchester.  As her friend, Rebecca Yeo says,

“She had survived a lot of injustice, including many years of deliberate abuse and inhumanity by the UK asylum system.  As a Disabled woman she faced extra hostility and relentless barriers meeting her daily needs.  But she never ever sank to their level. She remained actively committed to a better world, she was caring, compassionate, wise, loving and fun to the end.”

We first met Manjeet when she was involved in a Disabled Refugees Mural project run by Rebecca Yeo, and her ability to rally people to action over issues was clear.  This was first installed in Bristol, but Manjeet was among a small group who took these messages to different parts of the country including Parliament, the Guardian newspaper, and the University of Leeds. 

This was also seen in her agreeing to be a speaker at the Disabled Refugees event an number of organisations, including the Forum, put on in Bristol.

As  Ellen Clifford from DPAC says, “She leaves behind an enormous hole in the fight for social justice and in our hearts.” 

We send our deepest condolences to her family and most particularly to her daughter.  

(Rebecca is collecting photographs and tributes to create an album for Manjeet’s daughter.  If you have anything to share, please send it to: by 1st June 2020, with the subject line: Manjeet)

Coronavirus News in Brief 14th May 2020

1.      Car parks serving parks in Bristol are set to reopen on Thursday 14th May.

2.      Recycling centres will reopen to the public next week, from Monday 18th May.

There will be strict social distancing in place and the number of people able to access the sites will be limited so, it would be good if people only travel to a recycling centre if it is absolutely essential and the items cannot be safely stored at home.

For the first two weeks an odd and even number plate system will be in place, which means people will only be able to visit on certain days.  Initially only cars and small vans will be allowed to use the site.  It is not clear how this will work so visit the Council’s website to find out more information, next week.

3.      Information about changes to advice services

Most advice services have stopped all face-to-face appointments but still offering advice via telephone and email.  To see the latest update, please see here.

4.      Wellbeing and Covid-19 information in other languages

Every Mind Matters has produced 10 Tips to Help if You’re Worried about Coronavirus.  These tips are available to download in Bengali, Gujarati, Polish, Punjabi. Romani, Romanian, Russian, Somali and Urdu here.

5.      Updated booklet on dealing with stress and depression during covid-19

Community Access to Support Services (CASS) have updated their booklet on stress and depression, and produced a booklet on Grief.  You can find both here .

CASS have also produced a ‘mindfulness’ audio tool to help you get off to sleep.  If you haven’t yet tried it out you can get hold of it here.  This will help your mind switch off, relax and drift away…. Ahhh!

6.      Easy English packs for keeping busy and well during Coronavirus

Do you need information in Easy English?  Mencap has created a range of activity packs and ideas, all in Easy English, here.

7.      Support for those needing support managing their Self Injury

Bristol’s Self Injury and Support service has produced self-help information on coping with Covid-19, for those who self-harm.  You can find this information here.

8.      Infection control e-learning course

Infection prevention and control are essential to prevent the spread of coronavirus (COVID-19). This video-based course for care providers in care homes and home care, provided by the Social Care Institute for Excellence, will teach you about the spread of infection and what you can do to protect both yourself and the people you care for.