Mayor's message on COVID-19

Published on 18 March 2020

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Mayor's Message - 26 March 2020

Dear residents,

These are unique and challenging times. We are all feeling uncertain about what tomorrow and the next day may look like and how our lives might be affected into the future.
As a Council we are working together with other levels of Government and agencies to achieve the best outcomes for us all. I praise the work of our medical staff and first responders who are well prepared in this crisis. The health and wellbeing of everyone in our community is our biggest priority.

We have taken the unprecedented step of closing our buildings where people gather: Benalla Art Gallery, Benalla Library, BPACC, Visitor Information Centre, Council Customer Service Centre, Senior Citizens and others.

While our doors may be closed, we are still operating and our staff are still working. You can phone, mail or email us to conduct your regular business.

We are all being asked to change our normal routines to protect ourselves and those most vulnerable among us. Now is the time to remember that good personal flu hygiene is for our own benefit and that of the whole community. We must all do the right thing. As our Premier has said, "All this action is meaningless if some people choose to act selfishly and continue as normal. If you can stay home, you should stay home”.

While we should avoid face to face contact as much as possible, now is very much the time to stay connected. We may need to find new ways of staying in touch with our friends, family and loved ones – something I am sure we can do.

I know our many of our retail, tourism, and hospitality and recreation businesses are hurting. The time ahead will be even more difficult for them. We must support them to ensure that, when this crisis is over, people can continue to work and live in our wonderful community.

Together we can all do our bit to protect and help each other. And yes, maybe our lifestyle will change for a while but together we will work our way through these troubling times.

Take care everyone and stay well.

Mayor's Message - 18 March 2020

While we are yet to have a positive COVID-19 result in Benalla, the concern and response is here.

The good side is that people are practicing good flu hygiene - washing their hands, covering a cough, staying home if they feel unwell.

Not so great is that our supermarket shelves are bare and on that front, we ask you not to stock pile. Buy only what you need 

While these are unusual times, the Council is prepared. We’ve activated our Influenza Pandemic Plan and Business Continuity Plan.

Essential services including waste collection, meals on wheels, home help and maternal child health will continue.

Non-essential services that bring large groups of people into close contact – like workshops and programming at the Benalla Library and Benalla Art Gallery, have been suspended. Some major events have also been postponed.

As a Council, we are concerned with the health and wellbeing of our staff, volunteers, service providers and contractors, event operators, business owners and of course, the general public.

What we can all do is look after our own health and safety and consider that of our community. Continue to practice good flu hygiene and remember that the best place to get accurate, up-to-date information is the Department of Health and Human Services.

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Cr Danny Claridge



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