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Darren updates on postponement of May local elections

The Government has decided to postpone local councillor, mayoral and police and crime commissioner elections in Bristol and the rest of the UK. The May elections would coincide with what is currently predicted to be a peak in the spread of the Coronavirus. As this is a scheduled event, and one that would normally involve lots of smaller events in the run-up, it is responsible to postpone until they can be held at the safest times.

The government has announced that May’s local and mayoral elections in England will be postponed for a year due to the coronavirus outbreak.

It comes after the Electoral Commission said on Thursday the polls should be delayed until the autumn to “mitigate” the impact of the virus.

The polling watchdog had said there were “growing risks” to the delivery of the polls, due on 7 May.

Ten people have died with the virus, with 798 cases confirmed UK-wide.

Downing Street said it would be impractical to go ahead with the elections as planned, as they would come during the peak of the spread of the virus.

Local elections were due to take place for around 118 English councils, the London Assembly, the Mayor of London and seven English regional mayors.

Voting has also been due to take place in both England and Wales for police and crime commissioners.

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Darren gives update on team working-arrangements to prepare for Coronavirus

As the Coronavirus develops, businesses and teams will need to adapt so they can play their part in preventing the spread of the virus. Darren has outlined how his team are preparing for Coronavirus at this stage. The goal is to maintain a consistent full-time level of support throughout the development of the Coronavirus, although the constituency office response time may be longer at times.

As always, to find out information about the Coronavirus please go to the dedicated NHS 111 service.

Darren writes:

Dear constituent –

My first priority is to serve and represent residents across Bristol North West with personal, local and national issues.

As the COVID-19 pandemic develops, I want to take precautions in order to maintain our service delivery from both my Bristol and Westminster offices.

I have therefore asked my staff to work from home and there will be a pause in the events I regularly host, such as my coffee mornings and pub politics.

This means that we will be a little slower in responding to post and telephone calls due to re-direction. We will otherwise continue as normal but please bear with us, especially if we too suffer from illness within the team in the coming months.

If the situation continues to develop, I will look to host more online and telephone based briefings with constituents to ensure that you are as briefed as possible on wider local and national issues, as well as COVID-19.

In the meantime, I am keeping an updated COVID-19 FAQ page on my website which you can read here. You can also receive regular updates from my Facebook page, which you can follow here.

If you have symptoms or concerns related to COVID-19 you should firstly visit the NHS website. If this doesn’t answer your question, or if you don’t have access to the internet, you should call the NHS on 111. Please do *not* go to your GP surgery or A&E in person if you think you might have COVID-19 symptoms (i.e a dry cough, temperature and/or sore chest).

You can continue to contact me and my office on e-mail at darren.jones.mp@parliament.uk, whether about COVID-19 or not, and we will continue to do all that we can to help you.

Please follow the latest NHS guidance and look out for your neighbours.

With best wishes

Darren

Darren Jones MP
Member of Parliament, Bristol North West