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Third largest airline at Gatwick to cancel 3000 flights due to Coronavirus

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As a result of the COVID-19 ongoing situation, Norwegian, Gatwick’s third largest airline, is making preparations to cancel approximately 3000 flights between March and mid-June.

This huge number of cancellations represents 15% of the total capacity for that period and the company is adding extra measures including temporary layoffs of a large number of its workforce.

Norwegian say that over just the past week they have experienced a drop in demand for future bookings which is why they are cancelling 3000 of their flights to meet the change in demand.

These changes will affect their entire network and customers affected are to receive information about the changes as soon as they take place.

Norwegian carries almost 6 million UK passengers every year from Gatwick, Edinburgh and Manchester. These cancellations will affect each of the UK airports they operate from.

“This is a critical time for the aviation industry, including us at Norwegian. We encourage the authorities to immediately implement measures to imminently reduce the financial burden on the airlines in order to protect crucial infrastructure and jobs,” said CEO Jacob Schram of Norwegian.

“Unfortunately, cancellations will affect a significant share of our colleagues at Norwegian. We have initiated formal consultations with our unions regarding temporary layoffs for flying crew members as well as employees on the ground and in the offices. We will continue to engage in constructive dialogue with unions and employees to work through this difficult situation together,” said Schram.

Coronavirus

Over 580 people come forward to become a police emergency volunteer in Sussex

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The Chief Constable has praised hundreds of members of the public who have come forward to offer their services to support the county’s response to the coronavirus outbreak.

Following a call for support last week, more than 580 members of the public have expressed an interest in becoming a police emergency volunteer to help support Surrey Police and Sussex Police should resources reduce or additional specific skills and experience are required.

Sussex Police is continuing to plan ahead during this period of dealing with Covid-19 and as such, is creating a database of retired police officers, specials and police staff who may wish to return to policing for a temporary period, and members of the public who may have specific skills that would be of use.

Sussex Police Chief Constable Giles York said:

“We would like to say an enormous thank you to everyone who has expressed an interest in becoming a police emergency volunteer.

“We were delighted with the response we received and believe it demonstrates the great sense of community here in Sussex, with everyone wanting to pull together and help.

“This is also reflected in how the vast majority of the public are already supporting the force’s work by adhering to the government guidelines to stay indoors, to only travel when essential and to observe safe social distancing.”

As the situation progresses over the next few weeks, Sussex Police will continue to monitor its resourcing levels and assess the potential demand for additional roles. If it is felt a person’s particular skills can be utilised, Sussex Police will make contact with them.

CC Giles York added:

“We will endeavour to update all those who have expressed an interest in becoming a police emergency volunteer, but due to the fast-paced and ever-changing nature of the situation and the volume of expressions we have received, this may not always be possible.

“We ask people to please bear with us and know that even if we don’t respond to you immediately, we are incredibly grateful to you for expressing an interest in supporting Sussex Police.”

Sussex Police continues to engage with members of the public and explain the importance of following the government guidance, to protect public health and the NHS.

CC Giles York said:

“We are encouraging people to comply with the government guidance but if faced with non-compliance we will, if necessary and proportionate, follow up with enforcement action as set out in the new legislation.

“Sussex Police has a strong relationship with our communities and I know my officers will be using their skills and powers in a way that maintains public support. I have received many messages of support from community leaders and the public and am pleased to pass them onto officers who are taking personal risks to protect the NHS, they really make a difference. 

“We would also like to reassure the public that although we are putting these contingency plans in place, we are still in a position to respond to emergencies and carry out the normal day-to-day policing expected of us, to keep the public and our communities safe.”

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