Paula Hulburt and Chloe Ranford
Protecting the people of Marlborough is a top priority and everything possible will be done to help.
Marlborough Mayor John Leggett yesterday issued a heart-felt message to the public in the wake of Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern’s decision to raise New Zealand’s alert level to level three, with level four coming into force on Thursday.
“This is an unprecedented global emergency and everyone in Marlborough needs to play their part.
“I think it was inevitable … This is a clear signal that this is a very serious situation and that we each have to take responsibility to get through this.”
Nelson Marlborough Health chief medical officer Nick Baker says he believes the number of cases in Nelson Marlborough will continue to rise in the short term.
“The fight against Covid-19 will not be won in hospital corridors or at GP clinics but in the supermarket aisles.
“The key message is that we are physically separated but still together. The virus is like an invisible enemy; you only know it’s there seven days after it arrives.”
Dr Baker says these “challenging times” were especially hard for older, more vulnerable people in society.
“Be strong, be kind and think about your neighbours. The virus is like a fire if you like, we must keep it from spreading.”
Mayor John Leggett strongly urged Marlborough to support the Prime Minister’s and Ministry of Health’s advice and direction.
Council’s pandemic planning has been fast-tracked.
The Marlborough Pandemic Group met yesterday to discuss the Covid-19 crisis and share the latest information about the economic challenges now facing the Marlborough region.
Mayor Leggett, who chairs the group, says it’s a difficult time but people are doing their best to adjust to the new environment.
“Marlburians can have confidence that there is a lot of good work going on at the moment and our key industries and employer groups are responding to the challenges of the Covid-19 crisis.”
“We will come out the other side of this – we are a resilient bunch who have experienced challenges and emergencies before.”
Chief executive Mark Wheeler says council will be focusing on delivering “critical lifeline services.”
“Our focus now is on delivering critical lifeline services such as drinking water, waste management, sewerage and effluent disposal, road maintenance and emergency management.
“Keeping Port Marlborough and Marlborough Airport operational is also critical.”
Mark confirmed the Blenheim office front counter in Seymour St will close too.
Anyone wanting council services should contact them via phone on 03 520 7400 or email [email protected]