Milton Keynes Council is asking people to phone and email rather than calling in during the current coronavirus crisis.
With the Milton Keynes and the rest of the country in a three week lockdown, the council leader says its services have been reshaped to protect the most vulnerable people and to keep waste collection services going.
Cllr Pete Marland said: “Our main focus is on critical and essential service delivery such as social care, safeguarding vulnerable adults and children, and maintaining waste collections.
“Some council facilities are temporarily closed, or that we’re asking you to call or email us instead of dropping in. We’re following official guidance and will reopen as soon as it’s right to do so.”
Cllr Marland added: “I would like to thank everyone for their on-going support at this time. It is a very difficult period.
“In our city today we have thousands of people working to help people. People who work for the NHS, care workers, council staff and our emergency services.
“I know these people do an amazing job for us on a day in and day out basis and are currently going above and beyond at a time of crisis.
“However, what we have also seen is that people in other roles, such as people who supply and work in our supermarkets, our volunteers, and so many others, are playing a vital role in helping us get through this.
“I would urge you to stay safe and by following guidelines for protecting yourself and others we can get through this, and will be a stronger, more resilient place in the months and years to come.”
Essential services such as births, deaths, waste collection, home care, sheltered housing and safeguarding are not currently affected.
This is how council services in Milton Keynes have been temporarily changed:
Blue Badge applications: Visit https://www.milton-keynes.gov.uk/highways-and-transport-hub/parking/disabled-parking-blue-badge-scheme
Business Rates: Visit https://www.milton-keynes.gov.uk/business/business-rates
Children’s Centres: All temporarily closed (but contactable in emergencies)
Adult education and music service temporarily closed. Visit www.milton-keynes.gov.uk/schools-and-lifelong-learning/community-learning-mk-hub
Community Transport: For those able to travel and where it is really important, transport will be available.
Children and Family Centres: Children’s centres are temporarily closed. There is a limited service at Daisy Chain, West Bletchley 01908 641454. Hedgerows, Netherfield 01908 239000. Moorlands, Beanhill 01908 679819. The Rowans, Fullers Slade 01908 565852).
Highways: Essential roadworks (eg pothole repair) currently unaffected. Existing major infrastructure projects will be completed but the pipeline of new projects is under review.
Homelessness Prevention: Drop in appointments for residents in emergency need only. Otherwise call 01908 253481 or email email@example.com instead of visiting.
Housing Benefit and Council Tax Reduction: https://www.milton-keynes.gov.uk/benefits-council-tax
Libraries: Temporarily closed. Online eLibrary at https://www.milton-keynes.gov.uk/libraries
Local Welfare Assistance: https://www.milton-keynes.gov.uk/benefits-council-tax/local-welfare-provision
Planning applications: Call or email instead of visiting: details at https://www.milton-keynes.gov.uk/planning-and-building
Safeguarding: Report safeguarding concerns at https://www.milton-keynes.gov.uk/social-care-and-health/safeguarding-people-at-risk or call 999 if someone is in immediate danger.
SENDIAS (Special Education Needs and Disabilities): Call 01908 254518 or email firstname.lastname@example.org instead of visiting.
Taxi Licensing: Call 01908 252860 or email email@example.com instead of visiting (renewals only; new license service is suspended)
Trading Standards: Call 0808 2231133 or email firstname.lastname@example.org instead of visiting.
Civic Offices: Closed from Wednesday 25 March.
The council and the MK Community Foundation have launched the MK Emergency Response Appeal 19 Appeal to raise funds. MK Council has donated £50,000.
People who need emergency financial support quickly should visit https://www.milton-keynes.gov.uk/benefits-council-tax/local-welfare-provision