This week would have been Dementia Action Week 2020 but due to the Covid-19 pandemic the Alzheimer’s Society and other leading charities have taken the difficult decision to postpone it. Jon Cruddas MP has been a long-time supporter of dementia awareness campaigns and this year, with the recent controversy surrounding care homes Jon believed that the week should not go unmarked.

 

Since the beginning of the pandemic Tapestry-UK have been working tirelessly alongside Havering Council to ensure that support for the elderly and most vulnerable was in place. The charity has stepped up their operation to meet demand as the situation has shifted.

 

It can be difficult having to cope alone at the best of times, and the Covid-19 crisis has exacerbated many existing societal and mental health issues such as loneliness, anxiety and depression. Talking Therapies which are part of the NELFT Community Emotional Support Programme are a free and confidential NHS service that work with people across Barking and Dagenham, Havering, Redbridge and Waltham Forest that need support.

 

39 cross-party MPs, including Jon Cruddas have backed a campaign started by fellow MP Virendra Sharma which calls on the Government to waive the £120 Nursing and Midwifery Council registration fee for nurses, in recognition of their lifesaving work during coronavirus epidemic in the UK.

 

The Coronavirus crisis has had a profound effect on society and has changed many lives in the process forcing a rethink of priorities. This week Jon Cruddas MP was contacted by Sattesh Singh of Elm Park on behalf of his 11-year-old son Hemanth Singh. Hemanth had written a letter about his mother’s journey through Covid-19 and out the other side, which his father wished to share with the MP. 

Based on his family’s experience, in his letter Hemanth urges the public to follow Government guidelines so that the pandemic passes, and lockdown can be lifted.

 

Since the beginning of the Covid-19 crisis the council, community and voluntary sector across Barking and Dagenham have stepped up in extraordinary ways to support residents. BD CAN Plus, the Barking and Dagenham Citizens Alliance Network model has been at the forefront of mobilising support for thousands of local people. 

Following the NHSE/I letter published on 25th March 2020 confirming that routine face-to-face dental care has been suspended across the country, Jon Cruddas MP this week received reassurance that urgent dental care is available in London. Arrangements have been put in place to ensure patients can access urgent dental care during the pandemic period.

Access to the Urgent Care Hubs

The following process has been implemented in London to ensure patients can access urgent dental care:

 

Last week the government announced 18 innovative projects that will be awarded up to £25,000 under the TechForce19 challenge. TechForce19 was established to find digital solutions to problems currently being faced by different people in society as a result of Covid-19.

 

Today (24.04.2020) the Portuguese community of Dagenham came together to provide over 65 individual homemade meals, along with cakes, doughnuts, and drinks to NHS staff at Queen’s and King George’s Hospitals. The donation was organised by Joseph who manages Santa Brava Ltd, a Portuguese café and deli at Dagenham East.

Joseph commented in a short video: “we wanted to give the NHS some support, to say thank you for everything from all of our community. I’m very proud of my customers for all they have contributed.”

 

Over the last few weeks of lockdown in Dagenham and Rainham we have begun to see what commentators have called a ‘crisis within a crisis’ referring to the alarming lack of Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) across the health sector and social care facilities.

Jon Cruddas MP has worked alongside neighbouring MPs and local businesses to coordinate what PPE is available to the places that need it, but this week it has emerged through anonymous tip-offs that care homes are suffering the brunt of the crisis.

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