Covid 19 Updates

Updated 8th July at 21.05

This page will feature useful resources and updates regarding Covid 19 Resilience as we get them.

We also produce a weekly Covid 19 Media Monitor condensing media stories on Covid 19 relevant to community safety issues. Download the most recent Media Monitor PDF here.

The Impact of Covid 19 on Serious Organised Crime in Scotland

A presentation by DI Ricky Hatton on horizon scanning for organisations around serious organised crime (SOC) and Covid 19.

Over recent months , scams and other acquisitive crime have significantly increased throughout the UK as a result of fraudsters using COVID-19 as a new theme for criminality. It is assessed that this area of fraud against the public sector is likely to increase as OCG’s look for opportunities to exploit demand for PPE, the business grant scheme and furlough payments.

The pandemic has been widely used as a propaganda tool by SOC. As SOC adapts, so will it evolve in line with societal changes and needs. A short to long term assessment of SOC in Scotland may be a useful way of considering what lies ahead and how best to prepare organisations for the impact of that.

View the presentation here.

‘Spend time with me: Children and young people’s experiences of Covid 19 and the justice system’ – Centre for Youth and Criminal Justice

This paper details the findings of a short piece of work to gather the views of children and young people who are currently in contact with youth justice services or with previous experience of the youth justice system on COVID-19, and of practitioners working within the youth justice system. In total, 48 responses were received from children and young people, with findings from another organisation who had undertaken their own research with a further 22 children questions incorporated where relevant. Thirty six responses were received from practitioners covering 19 local authority areas, with almost three quarters of respondents social work staff and the remainder from third sector organisations.

Click here to read the full report.

Equally Safe at Work: guidance on violence against women, work and Covid 19

As part of Equally Safe at Work, Close the Gap has developed guidance on VAW, COVID-19 and work in order to support local government employers. The guidance outlines how COVID-19 affects women’s experience of VAW, and how this relates to women’s employment. It also provides information on how to recognise signs of VAW when a victim-survivor is working from home or in the workplace, and sets out best practice for responding to and supporting employees disclosing or reporting VAW.

Download the guidance here.

Public Health Scotland: Covid 19 wider impacts on the healthcare system

The COVID-19 pandemic has wider impacts on individuals’ health, and their use of healthcare services, than those that occur as the direct result of infection. Public Health Scotland has published an information tool which provides an overview of changes in health and use of healthcare during the COVID-19 pandemic in Scotland, drawing on a range of national data sources. You can access the COVID-19 wider impacts dashboard using the hyperlink below.

COVID-19 wider impacts on the health care system

Independent Advisory Group review on the use of new emergency police powers in Scotland

The Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic is the biggest global challenge that humanity has faced for generations. In an effort to tackle the Coronavirus, police officers were given unprecedented new powers to stop the spread of the virus.

The three main powers the police were given were:

  • To take someone home or take them to be tested if they were thought to be infectious.
  • To close a wide range of non-essential businesses.
  • To restrict people’s rights to move around in public or be part of a gathering.

The main task of the IAG is to examine the way Police Scotland has used its new powers and the impact this has had on people’s attitudes and behaviours.

Read more and how to contribute here.

Scotland’s Towns Partnership: Covid 19 Support for Towns and Improvement Districts

Scotland’s Towns Partnership has produced a new document for towns and improvement districts signposting to useful contacts, funds and organisations for support around Covid 19.

Download the document here.

Covid 19 and Alcohol: NHS Inform

NHS Inform has produced this webpage around Covid 19 and alcohol with information on how alcohol can affect your vulnerability to Covid 19, and general information and advice around safer drinking.

Covid 19: Wellbeing & Online Spaces Survey

This survey is exploring the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic, and consequential closures of education establishments, on young people (12-24) in Scotland. No identifiable information is being collected in this survey and no IP addresses will be stored. This project is specifically concerned with emotional wellbeing, the availability of online services, and instances of online bullying behaviours and rates of prejudice (harmful opinions or attitudes against groups of people). All responses to this survey are entirely confidential. Where possible, if you are aged 12 to 15, please seek the consent of a parent, carer or guardian before completing this survey. Data collected from this survey will support the research and potential development of services and resources for young people and education establishments in the aftermath of and response to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Take part in the Survey here.

Covid 19 Impact Surveys: Scottish Public Health Observatory

Public Health Scotland has compiled an overview of surveys, polls and qualitative studies which are expected to provide information on the impact of COVID-19 and pandemic response measures on the health and wellbeing of the population of Scotland.

The inclusion / exclusion criteria mean that studies are included only where:

(i)    Information is being collected on the population of Scotland (including UK surveys with a smaller Scottish sample)
(ii)   Findings are being (or are expected to be) made publicly available
(iii)  The target population is the general population or a specific population subgroup (e.g. parents, or young people with lived experience of  mental health problems); surveys of professional groups (e.g. teachers, NHS staff) are excluded
(iv)  The study is confirmed as going ahead, i.e. studies at the planning or funding application stage are excluded

Read more here.

Pupil Equity Funding: National Operational Guidance

Guidance to help schools plan how they will most effectively spend their Pupil Equity Funding (PEF) allocation.

Download here.

Covid 19 Supplementary National Violence Against Women Guidance

Councils will get more support to deal with increased levels of domestic abuse and gender-based violence during the coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak.

New guidance developed in partnership with COSLA will help women and children continue to get the best support that they deserve.

The guidance signposts to local resources, and assists decision-makers in identifying women and children at risk as well as the short, medium and long term steps they can take to support their recovery and wellbeing.

The guidance is part of a range of measures introduced to tackle higher levels of abuse and violence, including a £1.5 million funding package for the women’s aid and rape crisis network. It will help to maximise the effective protection and provision of support for those experiencing gender-based violence, both during this immediate crisis period and in the longer term.

Download the new guidance here.

Improvement Service: Covid 19 Good Council Practice

The Improvement Service website is building a collection of case studies highlighting good practice being carried out in communities during Covid-19.

Find out more here.

New SCDC resource: Supporting Communities Safely

In towns and villages across Scotland, communities are fighting COVID 19. These pages provide advice on how to virus proof the fantastic things you are doing and reduce the risk of indirect spread. Please read them carefully if you are starting to provide support or reviewing what you are doing already.

Find out more here.

CLiCK launch new helpline for women who sell sex online

CLiCK has launched a new helpline that women who sell/exchange sex or images online can use to get in touch with a CLiCK Women’s Worker.

The Helpline number is 0300 124 5564 and is available during the following times:

  • Tuesday: 3pm-5pm
  • Wednesday: 11am-7pm
  • Thursday: 6pm-9pm
  • Saturday: 12pm-2pm

SafeTea resources on preventing burns and scolds

The SafeTea campaign ran from October 2019 to January 2020, but the prevention of burns and scolds is arguably all the more pressing an issue during the current crisis when we are spending much more time in the home and the risk to children of burns and scolds is greater.

You can still access information and resources to prevent burns and scolds at www.safetea.org.uk

SCSN Covid 19 Survey Results Briefing Paper Published

This briefing paper pulls together some of the statistics related to community safety that have been emerging over the last few weeks. In doing so we have been able to identify some notable trends with regards to support for lockdown measures, financial concern, mental health and wellbeing and community spirit. This is an ongoing and rapidly changing situation and we will continue to update this as new findings are identified. You can find part I of our Community Safety Partnerships survey here, and we will be sharing part II in due course.

Read the Briefing Paper in full here.

Connecting Scotland

The Scottish Council for Voluntary Organisations, together with the Scottish Government, has launched a new programme, the Connecting Scotland Initiative, to connect up to 9,000 more people on low incomes who are considered clinically at high risk during Covid 19 so that they can access support services and stay in touch with loved ones.

For more information, click here.

New Covid Home Safety/Accident avoidance page for Parents

Parent Club have created a new webpage for parents with tips on how to stay accident free at home during the Covid 19 lockdown. Visit the webpage here.

Clear Your Head: new mental health website from Healthier Scotland

Clear Your Head is a new website that has been set up to provide people with useful practical advice on things which might help maintain or improve mental health during the Covid 19 crisis. You can visit the website here.

Emergency Hardship Fund for Sex Workers

Umbrella Lane, a charity for sex workers in Scotland, has set up an emergency hardship fund for sex workers based in Scotland during the Covid 19 crisis. Other organisations have set up similar funds and you can find out more by contacting Umbrella Lane.

Find out more here.

Drug, Alcohol and needle exchange service delivery changes

As a result of the rapidly evolving COVID-19 pandemic, many services have altered how they are delivered or are operating reduced hours.

This poses a risk to people who use drugs and those who support them due to confusion over where and how best to seek appropriate help or sterile injecting equipment during a time of change and uncertainty.

You can now stay up to date with local drug and alcohol treatment and pharmacy service changes during the pandemic thanks to a new online tool.

In an effort to centralise information across Scotland, Scottish Drugs Forum, Scottish Families Affected by Alcohol and Drugs and We Are With You have collaborated to produce a single database which enables drug and alcohol services and pharmacies to submit weekly updates. The map also includes updates on local family support services for people who are affected by someone else’s substance use.

You can access the database here.

Crew Survey on Changes to Drug Markets

The drug charity Crew is currently conducting a survey to gather information on changes to drugs markets and/or drug and alcohol use during the Covid 19 outbreak.

You can take part in the survey here.

Coronavirus Framework to support gypsy/traveller communities

The Scottish Government has published a new Framework to help local authorities and their partners, including the NHS, in decision making in their local response to Covid 19 in relation to gypsy travellers.

Download the guidance here.

Community Organisations, Activists and the Coronavirus – Poverty Alliance Briefing

In a short space of time, the Coronavirus has impacted our society in almost every possible way. With one million people in Scotland already living in the grip of poverty, the social and economic impact of the current crisis has the potential to sweep even more people into poverty in the coming months. It is essential that every step is taken to prevent that from
happening, and to take action to help keep people afloat.

In response to the unfolding crisis, the Poverty Alliance has sought the perspectives of community organisations and activists from across the Poverty Alliance network.

This briefing, while only providing an initial snapshot view, details some of the immediate impacts on community organisations, as well as some of the key perspectives and concerns of community organisations and activists.

Download the full briefing paper here.

RIDDOR – Reporting Coronavirus

The Health and Safety Executive (HSE) has issued guidance on when and how organisations should report coronavirus incidents under RIDDOR (the Reporting of Injuries, Diseases and Dangerous Occurrences Regulations 2013).

A report must only be made under RIDDOR, relating to coronavirus, when:

  • an unintended incident at work has led to someone’s possible or actual exposure to coronavirus. This must be reported as a dangerous occurrence
  • a worker has been diagnosed as having COVID-19 and there is reasonable evidence that it was caused by exposure at work. This must be reported as a case of disease.
  • a worker dies as a result of occupational exposure to coronavirus.

Find out more here.

Covid 19 Charity Wellbeing Fund launched

Third sector organisations across Scotland are being encouraged to apply for emergency funding to help cope with the effects of coronavirus (COVID-19).

More than 2000 charities, community and voluntary groups, and social enterprises are being offered immediate financial support from the £50 million Wellbeing Fund, which has been established to assist third sector organisations working with people impacted by the pandemic.

Find out more and apply here.

Support for those at High COVID-19 Risk

A new national helpline has been set up to provide essential assistance to those who don’t have a network of support but who are at high risk of contracting COVID-19. The service will offer help to those who do not have family or existing community support and cannot get online and who are over 70, disabled, require the support of mental health services, are pregnant or receive a flu jab for health reasons.

Police Scotland Guidance for Parents and Carers

Police Scotland have provided useful links, support and guidance for parents/carers to enhance the safety, security and awareness of their children or young people at a time when they will be spending more time online. You can access this guidance here.

YoungScot ‘LockdownLowdown’ Survey

YoungScot are currently running a survey to gain an insight into the main concerns or worries affecting young people during the Covid 19 crisis. You can access the survey here.

GCVS launch Glasgow Helps Website

The Glasgow Council for the Voluntary Sector has launched a new website for people in Glasgow who’re looking for help with food, medicine and a range of other kinds of crisis support. Visit the website here.

Fire Safety Covid 19 Checklist

The Scottish Fire and Rescue Service has produced a flyer with advice and safety information particularly relevant during the Covid 19 crisis. View the flyer here.

Co-operating in a crisis: a webconference series for local authorities

The European Forum for Urban Security is offering a series of virtual meetings on the subjects that concern local authorities in managing the coronavirus crisis. These themed meetings will take place every Tuesday and Thursday afternoon. You can find out more and take part in these meetings here.

NHS Guidance for those working in community settings

Working in people’s homes, care homes general practices and other community settings can be a daunting step at the best of times, and this can feel magnified just now due to these unusual and unpredictable circumstances we find ourselves living and working in.

Like many people working across health and social care at present, you may be feeling anxious and out of your depth; keen to do your best to protect patients and families within new, emerging ways of working, but worrying about your own wider family’s health and ensuring care for them too.

Within this section you will find resources to support practice in the community relative to COVID-19. You can decide to work through the resources in their entirety or focus on specific sections. Some key areas have been highlighted but you should try and tailor your learning to your specific need.

RoSPA Accident Information Hub

RoSPA has developed a new information hub, where everyone who is affected by social distancing measures – whatever their age and circumstances – can find information that is relevant to them. Please do point your (audiences/users/members/partners) to this webpage for help with accident prevention.

Scotland Cares Campaign

A new ‘Scotland Cares’ campaign has been launched to encourage people to volunteer during the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.
While the most important ask for the public remains to stay at home and follow the essential public health guidance, people who are healthy and not at risk can volunteer to provide practical or emotional help to those most in need.

Those wanting to volunteer to support their communities have three options which are signposted from the Ready Scotland website here.

NHS Inform Covid 19 advice and information

Find all of the information you need on Covid 19, including symptoms, advice on self isolation, shielding, caring for your symptoms, looking after loved ones with symptoms and much more. Visit NHS Inform Covid 19 page here.

Ready Scotland: Advice and information for the public on Covid 19

Ready Scotland have added a webpage to their site with advice on a range of different topics, including helping neighbours, friends and family, how to volunteer, advice for community groups, sensible shopping and advice for businesses.

Covid 19 and people with alcohol related problems: recommendations for services

Scottish Health Action on Alcohol Problems has put together this guidance for those working with people with alcohol related problems during the Covid 19 epidemic.

It provides recommendations for Alcohol and Drug Partnerships (ADPs), Commissioners, Alcohol Service Managers, Community Services and Mutual Aid and Support Groups, to enable them to reduce risks and ensure continued support for people with alcohol-related problems in the context of COVID-19.

Download guidance here.

New webpage on mental health and self-isolation for gay/bi men

SX Scotland has produced a new webpage with advice for gay and bi-sexual men who have sex with me on dealing with mental health problems during this period of self/social-isolation.

Guidance on Contingency Planning for People Who Use Drugs and Covid 19

The Scottish Drugs Forum has produced guidance on contingency planning for people who use drugs (PWUD). The guidance is for anyone working with PWUD but in particular those working on opioid substitution therapy & those working with people attending services to obtain injecting drug equipment.

SBRC Webinars for Business Resilience re Covid 19 

The Scottish Business Resilience Centre has begun running webinars to unite businesses across Scotland in responding to issues raised by Covid 19. Read more and get links for updates on future webinars here.

Trading Standards Scams Resources

The National Trading Standards (NTS) Scams Team has produced some helpful materials to help promote scams awareness around coronavirus (COVID-19) scams at this difficult time. Today the team has released a press release around criminals exploiting fears about coronavirus to prey on members of the public, particularly older and vulnerable people who are isolated from family and friends. There will also be media around this today on Sky and BBC, with your help the team would appreciate as much support as possible. Click here to access all resources and links.

COVID-19 Justice Information Hub

The Criminal Justice Voluntary Sector Forum have produced a hub of relevant guidance, legislation, resources and information about changes to current processes in order to support the Scottish justice sector. It will be updated daily as far as possible.

SCDC Advice for Organisations to work digitally

As the coronavirus situation develops, community organisations are having to change how they deliver their services and support their communities, especially those most vulnerable.

SCDC can help by offering advice about different tools (we’ve linked to good lists below), resources and ways of working that suit your group.

Find out more here.

Trading Standards ScamShare newsletter

Trading Standards Scotland have created a new regular bulletin to share information about the most recently reported scams across Scotland. This is in the context of a noted increase in scams since the Covid 19 outbreak.

Covid 19 and the production of statistics and social research

Statisticians and researchers within The Scottish Government and other public bodies collect, analyse and publish official statistics and research reports to help government, business and the public make informed decisions.

The coronavirus illness (COVID-19) is a significant challenge to us all, and we are working with colleagues across the Government Statistical Service and Government Social Research profession, to ensure that Scotland along with the UK as a whole has the vital information needed to respond to the immediate and longer term impacts of this pandemic on our society and economy.

This means we will need to change our usual operations, to ensure we are able to support the government’s response to this crisis as well as providing the necessary information when it is needed the most.

We also need to consider what it is right and appropriate for us to be asking data providers and respondents to supply to us at this time, given the pressures on key areas and staff. We will be making urgent decisions around which data collections can be paused, or in some cases cancelled.

The changes to our work, and data collections and research activity, will mean that the production of some statistics and planned research outputs will need to be suspended. It could also affect the quality of some of our other statistics, in terms of accuracy, or the level of detail available, such as less commentary or fewer breakdowns. There will be new outputs related to COVID-19.

Given that some statistics and research outputs will be even more important during this period, whereas others less so, decisions will be made on a case by case basis, prioritising what is relevant to the current situation, and we will be open and transparent about decisions made and the potential effects on our statistics and research. Throughout this process, we will remain guided by the Code of Practice for Statistics in publishing official statistics, that are of public value, are high quality and can be trusted,as well as the Government Social Research Code and publication protocol.

The latest information on our planned outputs or postponements will continue to be available on our release calendar.

The Office for Statistics Regulation have also issued a statement about their approach to regulating our statistical work at this time.

Competitions and Markets Authority: Report unfair business practices

The Competitions and Markets Authority has issued a form which you can use to report a business you think is acting unfairly during the Covid 19 outbreak. For more information or to report a business, click here.

Charities and Coronavirus: update from the charity regulator (OSCR)

There are many sources of information about Coronavirus.  All charities should read the guidance on coronavirus (COVID-19) from the Scottish Government. The guidance includes advice for non-healthcare settings, including tips that apply to people working in hospitality settings, leisure facilities, entertainment venues and premises used by community groups. NHS inform will give you the latest public health advice.

SCVO Coronavirus Community Assistance Directory website launched

The SCVO has launched a new website where you can search for or offer support in your local community. Information on the site is provided by users and not verified, so please report any inaccurate posting.

Communities Channel Scotland sets up dedicated Covid 19 webpage

Communities Channel Scotland has set up this dedicated webpage which will provide regular updates on support and sharing of ideas on community responses to the outbreak.

Scottish Government launches £350million fund to support responses to Coronavirus

An additional £350 million will go to those most affected by the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic, Communities Secretary Aileen Campbell has announced.

The funding will be made available to councils, charities, businesses and community groups and designed to be flexible, cutting down on red tape to enable them to respond swiftly and according to local need for people impacted economically or through reduced contact with society, including anyone struggling to access food.

For more information on the funding and to apply, please contact SocialJusticeMailbox@gov.scot