Coronavirus

It has often been described as this generations’ world war – the Coronavirus has killed almost 6,000 people so far and infected over 160,000 people across the globe.

In preparation for some of the emergency measures which are likely to come to the UK – the Emergency Services Day team has been looking at ways we can do our bit to help the men and women in blue, green, red and orange.

For a variety of reasons, some emergency services personnel do not live near to the hospital or police, fire, ambulance or search and rescue base where they work – this is particularly the case in London. Should the UK follow other European countries in suspending or substantially reducing public transport, then 999 workers who do not live near to where they work and do not drive will struggle to get into work or would likely struggle to find somewhere to sleep unless their service has secured somewhere as happens during police Aid.

Emergency services in other European countries are working incredibly long hours to save those infected with the Coronavirus, and all signs are that the UK emergency services will have to do the same.

As such in order to assist frontline emergency services personnel, we have written to all major hotel chains operating in the United Kingdom to ask whether they would be willing to offer free hotel rooms to frontline emergency services personnel during the next 14 weeks which is the time at which the Coronavirus is expected to peak in the UK. Some hotels might be able to offer rooms for a few weeks at a time and some might be able to commit to rooms for longer.

We will maintain a spreadsheet for each region of which hotel chains and hotels in the UK have rooms and put them in touch with emergency services / the Local resilience forum co-ordinator in their area so that the local force can allocate the room accordingly.

We do not want to tread on the toes of the Government, Local resilience forums or the police, fire or ambulance chiefs, instead, we are merely trying to do our small bit during this national emergency. We very much welcome the chance to work with any other charity or organisation who might be able to help our emergency services.

There are a lot of questions such as ‘what if I catch the Coronavirus and have to self-isolate in the hotel?’ and ‘what if my hotel has to go into quarantine?’….these are all unanswered questions – we are following the public guidance just as you are. But it is a starting point by beginning conversations with hotels / kind-hearted people with a spare room.

Similarly, if you have either a spare room or you’re a BnB near a police or fire station or a hospital, please get in touch. If you have any other ideas to help our emergency services, or you are a business which wants to donate food, resources or equipment then please get in touch and we can point you in the right direction.

The Government will recruit an army of volunteers according to the Prime Minister, Boris Johnson to assist in helping the vulnerable and those who have the Coronavirus. We will promote this on our social media feeds when more is known.

I want to stress we are not charging anybody for doing this and nobody has asked us. We are doing so because even if it helps one member of the emergency services it will have been worth it.

In order to assist with the above, I would welcome volunteers who could act as co-ordinators for their area. We would be looking at at least 3 people for each region in the UK, in case one or two of your colleagues get sick.

We will be looking to do this ‘campaign’ until the Government decides the national emergency has ended.

These are uncertain times, but we can all do our bit by washing our hands and looking out for each other.

We have set up a dedicated email address for this campaign which is coronavirus@999day.org.uk – please include which region in the UK you can help in e.g. North West England.

To cover the data protection side of things – all data and email addresses etc relating to this will be deleted on 31st July 2020 unless the national emergency in the UK is ongoing – in which case they would be deleted 30 days after the national emergency has ended.

— Thomas Scholes-Fogg, Founder and Chairman – Emergency Services Day