And today the echo sends this message to the government: Support us and we will defeat this.
Liverpool and the City Region have some tough weeks and months ahead – the toughest in Britain as we bear the brunt of the new coronavirus restrictions.
We can all look after others and make sure that no-one carries this burden alone. Because that is what makes our city what it is. This is Liverpool.
Many of us will feel frightened, isolated and lost amidst the maze of seemingly contradictory rules and support packages that offer hardly a plaster to cover the deep wounds of our region’s economy.
People are understandably worried about their lives and livelihoods, as well as their emotional wellbeing – all in the shadow of a pandemic that we know needs to be contained.
Pubs, bars, gyms and casinos were among the companies that were ordered to close their doors starting tomorrow, leaving many of them struggling to survive.
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But while this crisis is unprecedented, the need to stand together in the face of adversity is nothing new for Liverpool. Our city – and the communities of Merseyside – have faced challenges time and again.
Time and time again we have shown resilience, determination and the will to weather the worst, while always hoping for the best.
Many times we have also shown how much we value our NHS, and now more than ever we must support these front line workers and respect measures to stop the spread of the virus.
Wearing masks where necessary, social distancing, washing hands and avoiding unnecessary risks have become second nature to many of us. But we cannot afford to lower our vigilance, and we must comply with the new restrictions to give us a chance in the fight.
The closure of gymnasiums will affect many people, as the winter weather will make it more difficult to exercise outdoors. If you struggle, reach for support. If you know someone who needs help, do what you can.
And we can and must still support each other. We can all care for others and make sure that no one carries this burden alone. Because that is what our city is all about. This is Liverpool.
Emotional support will be crucial to get us through this. But think also of the financial support we can offer our local businesses. Supporting restaurants that work safely, shopping locally or buying vouchers are great ways to ensure their survival.
We know that this will not be enough. Liverpool knows all about solidarity, about justice, about coming together. But we also know that it will take the national government to unleash these qualities, to provide the resources and support to keep businesses alive, to give hope in these dark times, and to support the plans for our city’s economy when we appear on the other side.
We can survive this – but we cannot and must not be expected to do it alone. It is time that the government’s supposed commitment to the North, to “levelling” the regions and ensuring a fair agreement is not just backed up by words and election slogans.
We cannot go back to the 1980s. Too many people have worked too hard to make Liverpool a vibrant, forward-looking, safe and exciting city. To allow any other outcome would be a crime.
Nothing we have seen so far suggests that the government has an adequate response to the scale of the challenge facing our urban region. The level of financial support offered has already been criticized by regional leaders and MPs and it is to be feared that their frustrations will fall on deaf ears in Westminster.