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Plaid criticise government on skills

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plaid123PLAID CYMRU have criticised the Welsh Government’s record on skills development. From a discussion held in the Senedd, Plaid have highlighted three key areas they believe are of concern- The massive cuts in the post-19 skills budget by the Welsh Government; Questions about how rural, small and medium sized businesses are included in the future and the role of the Welsh language. “Plaid Cymru have already outlined their vision on skills that they say will ensure that everyone in Wales remains in skills training until they are 19 years old. Shadow Education and Skills Minister Simon Thomas said: “Plaid Cymru welcomes, finally, the Welsh Government trying to get to grips with the skills gap that exists between Wales and other nations in the UK, Europe and beyond as well as high unemployment. We need to remember, however, that those who are in post- 19 education have been through fifteen years of education under the Labour Welsh Government and in today’s announcement the Deputy Minister for Skills and Technology must concede his Government’s shortcoming. The Welsh Government has delivered massive cuts to the post- 19 skills budget, and is now looking to businesses to make up the funding shortfall. He continued by adding: “The Party of Wales’ has previously called on the Government to work more closely with the private sector as it identifies the skills it needs, and I’m glad to see the Welsh Government attempt to do this. However, the Minister needs to tell us how he will ensure that this is rolled out consistently across Wales and how he will ensure that rural businesses and SMEs are not excluded. The Welsh Government has itself acknowledged the crucial role of Welsh language skills to the economy, so it’s disappointing that there is no provision made for it in today’s announcement, particularly after the Welsh Government slashed the funding for teaching Welsh to adults. Plaid Cymru has outlined our vision to ensure that everyone in Wales remains in skills training of some form until they are 19 years old. We want everyone in Wales to be able to develop the skills they need to excel in the workplace, and to help our businesses excel in the global market. Responding to these criticisms, Deputy Minister for Skills and Technology, Ken Skates, said: “These comments are poorly-informed, hastily put together and show a fundamental lack of understanding of the skills system in Wales. Let’s be clear, t h e new Plan has nothing to do with budget cuts, but it has everything to do with ensuring we continue to raise standards at every stage of learning from early years to post-19. In developing the new Plan, we have worked extensively with bodies such as the FSB and have listened to the views of employers of all sizes. We need a sustainable and responsible funding system for skills and our new 10 year plan sets out how we will achieve this. Evidence shows that many employers across Wales are already making a substantial investment in skills and the Plan is all about ensuring that we encourage more of our employers to do the same. We are already working with regional partnerships across Wales to look at specific skills needs. This includes reviewing support for developing Welsh language skills for use in the workplace, building on the best practice already in place across Wales.

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Rider of a motorbike taken to hospital following collision with a car

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A COLLISION which involved a car and a motorbike on Friday afternoon (Jun 18) saw one person being transferred to hospital.

Dyfed-Powys Police have confirmed that the collision, which happened at approximately 1.17pm at Dwrbach, Scleddau, involved a white Seat Ibiza and a black Suzuki motorbike.

The Herald understands that the accident happened at a junction near The Gate Inn public house.

The incident caused the road to be closed while emergency services dealt with the situation.

The rider of the motorbike was transferred to Glangwili Hospital for treatment.

A Police spokesperson said: “Dyfed-Powys Police attended a two vehicle road traffic collision which occurred in Scleddau, Fishguard early Friday afternoon, June18th 2021.

“The collision involved a white Seat Ibiza and a black Suzuki motorbike. The rider of the motorbike was taken to hospital.

“The road was closed for emergency services to deal with the collision.”

A rapid response vehicle and an ambulance were dispatched to the scene.

A Welsh Ambulance Service spokesperson said: “We were called to attend a road traffic collision involving a motorcycle at Dwrbach, Fishguard at 1.17pm on Friday 18 June. We sent one rapid response vehicle and one emergency ambulance. One patient was taken to Glangwili Hospital for further treatment.”

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Residents urged to be alert to Covid-19 symptoms following cluster of cases

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PUBLIC HEALTH WALES, Pembrokeshire County Council and Hywel Dda University Health Board are urging members of the public to be alert to COVID-19 symptoms following the identification of a cluster of cases in the Tenby area.

The 22 confirmed cases are linked to social and sporting events and local schools and have generated a large number of contactssince the first cases were confirmed on Saturday, 12 June. 

A number of individuals, including pupils, are currently isolating and close contacts of the positive cases continue to be traced.

From Monday 21 June to Sunday 4 July, a mobile testing unit will be available for local residents in and around Tenby to access if they have symptoms.

This is based at Salterns Car Park, Marsh Road, Tenby, SA70 8DU.  To book a test visit the UK portal https://www.gov.uk/get-coronavirus-test or ring 119.

Residents can protect themselves and others from Coronavirus by remaining at least two metres away from everyone else, washing their hands regularly, and by wearing a face covering where required. 

The virus disperses in a well ventilated environment, so opening windows and allowing fresh air to circulate is another way to keep ourselves safe.

Residents should take up the vaccine when offered, and self-isolate and get a test if they or anyone in their household develop symptoms.

As well as the three most common symptoms of Coronavirus – a fever, a new continuous cough, or a loss/change of taste and smell – people with any of the following, wider symptoms that are persistent and/or unusual for them are also strongly encouraged to get a PCR test:

  • Mild summer cold symptoms – including sore throat, runny nose, headache
  • Flu-like symptoms, including myalgia (muscle ache or pain); excessive tiredness; persistent headache; runny nose or blocked nose; persistent sneezing; sore throat and/or hoarseness, shortness of breath or wheezing
  • Generally feeling unwell and a history of being in contact with a known COVID-19 case
  • Any new or change in symptoms following a previous negative test

If you have any of the above symptoms, even if you have been vaccinated, please stay home and book a PCR test through the UK portal https://www.gov.uk/get-coronavirus-test or ringing 119.

When booking your PCR test, you will also be asked about your symptoms: if you have wider summer cold or flu-like symptoms as described above, rather than the classic three symptoms, choose ‘None of these symptoms’ and then choose one of the following options to enable you to complete the booking:

• My local council or health protection team has asked me to get a test, even though I do not have symptoms or

• A GP or other healthcare professional has asked me to get a test.

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Paul Davies submits views to Health Board Consultation

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Senedd Member Paul Davies has fed his views into Hywel Dda University Health Board’s consultation, “Building a Healthier Future after Covid-19.”

In response to the Health Board’s proposals, Mr Davies has made it clear that he opposes any movements to centralise or downgrade services at Withybush hospital.

Mr Davies said, “I cannot emphasise how important this consultation is and so I’d urge everyone across Pembrokeshire to read through the Health Board’s proposals and make their views known. In my submission, I’ve made it crystal clear that the people of Pembrokeshire should not have to travel further for vital health services.

“I want to see Hywel Dda start prioritising Pembrokeshire by investing in services at Withybush hospital so that it can support people living and working across the county.

“There’s still time to feed into the consultation and have your say on the Health Board’s plans. The deadline is Monday, June 21 and you can find more information here – https://www.haveyoursay.hduhb.wales.nhs.uk/building-a-healthier-future-after-covid-19.” 

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