1. ITV Report

Devon County Council sending emergency food parcels to those 'shielding' from coronavirus

  • Watch the full report from ITV News West Country reporter Bob Cruwys:

Devon County Council has started sending out emergency food parcels to vulnerable residents who have been told by the Government to "Shield" from COVID-19.

Volunteer staff, redeployed from other council services like 'Active Devon', have been packing up the boxes at a distribution hub on the outskirts of Exeter.

Council workers who would usually be issuing parking tickets are delivering the parcels. Credit: Devon County Council

The parcels, which are free and contain seven days-worth of food for one person, are being delivered using vehicles driven by Civil Enforcement Officers from the County Council’s parking team, who would normally be giving out parking tickets.

Phil Norrey, Devon County Council’s Chief Executive, said:

Our absolute focus at the moment is to rapidly deliver vital support to our residents with the highest medical needs that put them at the greatest risk.

The rigorous ‘shielding’ measures include minimising interaction by staying at home at all times and avoiding any face-to-face contact to prevent being exposed to the virus.

But this means that thousands of our residents who are at high risk of severe illness from coronavirus because of underlying health conditions could be left without vital food, medicine and care supplies, particularly if they live alone and don’t have family, friends or social care services to help them.

– Devon County Council