Council pledge

Warning for a minority of people who abuse council staff battling Covid

COUNCIL staff in West Cheshire working to clear a backlog of work caused by the Covid-19 pandemic have been subjected to abuse from a small number of people.
Cheshire West and Chester Council welcomes reasonable complaints because they help the authority to make improvements.
But they will not tolerate abuse – and in extreme cases council services could be withdrawn.
This is the message from council leader Cllr Louise Gittins (pictured) in a statement thanking the vast majority of residents who have offered support and co-operation as the challenges of Covid continue

Cllr Gittins urged residents to treat council staff with respect as they carry out their essential duties.
She said: “From social care and call centre staff to waste collectors and highways crews, our teams have worked tireless through an exceptionally challenging pandemic. The efforts of all public sector key workers should be celebrated, and I thank our residents for their support and patience as these difficult times continue
“I know most of our residents appreciate the hard work our Council officers are delivering but I’ve sadly heard reports of a small number of people displaying unreasonable and abusive behaviour – physical, verbal and online – towards the people trying to help them.
“ We must choose to be kind and treat everyone with dignity and respect. Council staff are no exception – they are real people, part of our communities and could be our neighbours, friends or family members. This behaviour prevents them from playing their part to build a greener, fairer and stronger place for us to live. This is our collective responsibility, and it is up to us all to be mindful of the way we treat each other.
“We always welcome feedback and reasonable complaints and gladly receive these as they help us improve. I want to make it clear, however, that abusive behaviour will not be tolerated.”
If residents would like to comment on anything the Council is doing, they can have their say by participating in one of the wide ranging public consultations available on the council website. Residents can also visit the website to help the council improve by providing feedback.
If members of the public witness anyone being subject to threatening behaviour, it should be reported to Cheshire Police by phoning 101. The council, in partnership with Cheshire Police, can take action where threats or abuse reach a criminal behaviour threshold. This could include withdrawing council services in extreme situations.

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