Contingency Planning for Coronavirus (CV19) – DLA Statement 12th March 2020

DLA is acting to minimise the infection risk to staff, clients and other professional contacts; and to maintain our service level to clients, with minimal disruption.

In responding to the unfolding epidemic, DLA will act in accordance with government guidance and, if necessary, in accordance with government instruction. All staff have been asked to observe the guidance now in operation to control the spread of the infection.

DLA has already put in place a bespoke emergency contact/information update regime to manage anticipated and increased levels of illness and facilitate an immediate response if circumstances dictate closure or reduced operation from the Milton Keynes office.

The vast majority of our staff are equipped and able to work from home with remote access to our central server and all data. We are at present assuming that telephone and email connections will be uninterrupted. All staff are instructed to be prepared for a short notice instruction to work from home, so are ‘carrying’ the essentials around with them.

In circumstances where working from home becomes preferable or advised (not enforced) we will instruct staff accordingly and may also initiate an ‘at distance’ office working arrangement for those that prefer to continue to come to work and can do so without risk to others.

For the moment, we are asking staff to consider carefully whether travel on public transport and face to face meetings are important and/or necessary to deliver an uncompromised service to clients. We are also respecting and prioritising the need to reduce exposure for those who have health conditions or caring responsibilities that dictate greater caution. If suitable alternatives to travel exist (for example conference calls) these are being encouraged. We are monitoring this approach continually, in anticipation of having to enforce a reduced travel regime.

In the event of a more stringent ‘lock down’ and assuming that we are able to avoid prohibitive levels of illness, we anticipate being in a position to provide an effective level of service to clients with most people working from home. In that circumstance, it is anticipated that there is potential for delay/interruption in delivering physical outputs (reports, printed materials etc) and services which are of necessity ‘public’ (planning committees, workshops, exhibitions etc). Otherwise our professional outputs (written/drawn/digital) and our ability to give advice should be largely unaffected (subject to limitations which are beyond our control).

Most importantly the team here will make every effort to keep clients and contacts informed of our actions and contingency arrangements and any additional contact information.

This statement will be kept under review over the coming weeks.

Any queries please contact our Managing Partner Julia Foster –