I’m sure many breathed a little sigh of relief on Monday when the Prime Minister announced that the country would progressively move to an Alert Level Two from today. The move reflects weeks of collective hard work and dedication to slow the spread of COVID-19, and it is very reassuring to see our efforts cumulate in the opening of more businesses and being able to see our friends and family again.
It will certainly feel a little more like normal after what has been a considerable amount of time living with very different routines and way of life. It’s critical however, that we all remain vigilant and keep up the great work we’ve been doing by following what the Government asks of us.
For the Ashburton District, today means the reopening of our local facilitates. The EA Networks Centre, Ashburton Library, Museum and Council building are all opening their doors with some additional health and safety processes to ensure the wellbeing of the community and our staff.
The Government has stressed that personal hygiene and physical distancing is still very important under Level Two, and we are implementing measures that support this.
Contact tracing is being implemented at our facilities and residents will be urged not to enter the buildings if they are feeling unwell and may be exhibiting symptoms of COVID-19.
To help you understand what is expected when going to any of these facilities, there will be posters at the entrances and throughout the buildings.
We are very excited to begin welcoming you back, whether that be in the EA Networks Centre gym, the Library or to the Customer Service desk at the Council office, and your safety is our top priority.
On another note, we all appreciate how important rubbish and recycling services are to our wellbeing, and throughout the lockdown restrictions, the Council has worked hard to keep them operational for you.
I’d like to take this opportunity to remind residents that although you were able to use the yellow recycling bin for rubbish during Alert Level Four a few weeks ago, this is no longer the case. Please ensure you are sorting your rubbish, recycling and glass into the correct bins and crate for collection.
A yellow bin containing rubbish can contaminate an entire truck-load of recycling and the whole lot then has to go to landfill, so please make sure those bins are being used correctly again.
I’m looking forward to our local economy beginning to safety open up again today. Remember to play this safe and do what we can ensure Level Two is a success