Note to Residents
25th March, 2020
We hope you are as well as can be expected in these difficult times.
We are writing to let you know (i) our plans for operating through Covid-19 restrictions and how they will impact our services and your building and (ii) links to official government information should you require guidance, although we imagine most people are now well-versed in this from the media.
The circumstances in which we are operating are changing rapidly on a daily basis, so we will be reviewing our approach based on the information provided by the Government and the NHS.
At London Block Management, we care about the health and safety of our team and of our clients. We have temporarily switched to a fully remote working regime and postponed all face-to-face meetings and routine site visits for the time being.
We would like to assure our residents that all necessary steps have been taken to ensure full IT and phone system capability and our out-of-hours emergency service will also remain in place as usual. Our team is here to help and we are working extremely hard to provide the highest level of service during this unprecedented time.
Contractors and on-site staff
We have communicated with our contractors and suppliers and they are putting in place similar practices to work remotely. At this stage, we believe that contractors will be allowed to attend emergency works (where there is risk to the property or to the health and safety of residents). All routine maintenance works have been put on hold for at least the next three weeks. Please be assured that we have a long and robust contractor list so we expect to be able to get the emergency support that our buildings need.
We believe that cleaning staff and contractors will be permitted to continue cleaning common parts of buildings as they are relatively high-risk areas. Staff are prioritising cleaning high footfall / touch areas (including, but not limited to, door handles, door panels, lift buttons and bannisters). If you have on-site staff in your building, we also believe that they will be able to continue working with the appropriate PPE. We are keeping in close touch with them to ensure that they have the support they need. Should the staff need to self-isolate, we are still able to access temporary cover at the moment.
Should government advice restrict our approach further, or if any of our contractors experience reduced workforce due to the outbreak, we will continue to prioritise emergency tasks and works, which if not carried out, could directly affect the health and safety of our residents. All minor tasks will then be queued and carried out at the earliest time possible.
Most delivery companies have now implemented no-contact delivery procedures, where the courier leaves the item outside your property for collection. Residents in self-isolation must ensure to use no-contact delivery for the safety of the couriers and the community as a whole, however, it is advisable that all residents utilise the new delivery option to guarantee their personal health and safety.
If your building benefits from on-site staff, please make sure to communicate with them that you would like the post to be left outside your door, if you are in self-isolation or simply prefer no-contact delivery.
Rubbish Disposal and Collection
The virus that causes coronavirus disease (COVID-19) is stable for several hours to days depending on the surface that it is present on. This is why we ask all residents in self-isolation to follow the government’s advice on personal waste (such as used tissues). Waste and disposable cleaning cloths should be stored securely within disposable rubbish bags. These bags should then be placed into another bag, tied securely and kept separate from other general household waste or recycling. Personal waste should be put aside for at least 72 hours before being put in your usual external household waste bin.
We are sure you have access to ample information online about the ongoing efforts to combat Covid-19 and the steps we are all being asked to take. We have compiled a basic list for you below as a reference point if you do need further information.
We are committed to ensuring the well-being and health and safety of all of our staff and residents. That is why we will be keeping our approach flexible - you can access this letter and other future updates via our news section, which you can find here: https://www.blockmanagement.com/news.
Any major future updates will be communicated with you directly via e-mail.
Covid-19 – Further Sources of Government Advice
If You Need to Self-isolate
Government advice is to self-isolate if you or anyone in your household displays symptoms of new continuous cough and/or high temperature. For the health and safety of others, it is important to follow the self-isolation rules laid out below and follow further guidance provided by the government and the NHS on this matter.
If you live alone and you have any symptoms of coronavirus illness (COVID-19), however mild, you need to stay at home for 7 days from when your symptoms started.
If you live with others and you are the first in the household to have symptoms, then you must stay at home for 7 days, but all other household members who remain well must stay at home and not leave the house for 14 days. The 14-day period starts from the day when the first person in the house became ill.
For anyone else in the household who starts displaying symptoms, they need to stay at home for 7 days from when the symptoms appeared, regardless of what day they are on in the original 14-day isolation period.
For further details on symptoms and self-isolation please visit: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/covid-19-stay-at-home-guidance/stay-at-home-guidance-for-households-with-possible-coronavirus-covid-19-infection
Due to the fast-moving situation, we believe that there will be an increasing number of our residents who will be required to self-isolate. We understand that if you live in a block of flats, there will be residents in the building who are self-isolating. It is important to remember that residents self-isolating and following government guidelines, do not pose any foreseen risk to other residents and building users.
If you or anyone in your household are self-isolating, are showing any symptoms, or have travelled lately please notify us and the on-site staff. We will treat this information with discretion and require it to make suitable arrangements - should that be arranging increased cleaning services outside your property or making alternative arrangements to protect contractors and staff.
The latest information from the NHS and the Government can be found on the following pages:
The pandemic is taking up most of the media conversation, and we understand this can be a primary cause of stress. In times like these, it is important to take care of your mental health as well as physical wellbeing. If you would like to find out more on how to manage stress during these unprecedented times, please refer to the guidance provided by CDC.