THE Mayor of Antrim and Newtownabbey has implored residents across the Borough not to be complacent in the battle against COVID-19.
Local people remained commendably stoic during lockdown, but as restrictions eased some seemed to believe that the war has been fought and won.
Not so, according to a concerned Jim Montgomery.
“In the first phase of the spread of the pandemic, the response of the public was vital in flattening the curve and protecting our NHS from being overwhelmed,” said the Mayor.
“Of course as lock-down was eased, it is understandable people would be eager to resume elements of normality.
“However we must be vigilant not to allow the virus to spread through our families and communities and we all know there are simple practical steps that we can all take in this effort.
“Strictly respecting social distancing, the requirements for face coverings, and the revised regulations on public gatherings, are really crucial in avoiding clusters in our community.
“Being mindful of our own health and COVID-19 symptoms, and getting tested quickly when you think you may have contracted the infection is important too.
“Where those cases do occur, having downloaded the Stop COVID App on your phone can greatly help the Public Health Agency Track and Trace Programme.
“Even making sure we follow those basic steps from early on in this campaign that are still relevant such as thorough and regular handwashing.
“Parents, talk to your young people. Explain that doing the right thing can protect their family, particularly elderly relatives who are more vulnerable.
“Our brave NHS staff and other frontline workers are showing tremendous courage and resilience, but we must all play our part and take responsibility ourselves for suppressing the number of cases.
“In doing so we will also protect our local businesses against any need to reintroduce restrictions whether that is regionally or at a local level.”