Money, Jobs, Rent, Business, Children
We are trying to keep up to date here with information on how and when people can access the financial support and job security measures that have been announced.
Click here for the Government’s what-you-need-to-do advice page
Increase to Working Tax Credits announced!
The government has announced that Working Tax Credits payments will be increased from 6 April 2020
To find out what’s happening and who this affects please
Individuals, Isolation and Money
If you are self-isolating because of COVID-19: From 13 March, you can now claim SSP. This includes individuals who are caring for people self-isolating in the same household and therefore have been advised to do a household quarantine. To check your sick pay entitlement, you should talk to your employer, and visit https://www.gov.uk/statutory-sick-pay for more information.
There is also some good info at MoneySavingExpert.com
provides information about coronavirus and claiming benefits. It will continue to be updated. Please check it regularly for updates on the arrangements the Department for Work and Pensions is making to support those who are affected by coronavirus.
Letter from the Minister of Housing setting out the measures that are in place to support social housing residents during the next phase towards reopening society
Advice for people who buy care and support through a direct payment, as well as local authorities, clinical commissioning groups and those who provide care and support.
Information for people who are caring, unpaid, for friends or family during the coronavirus outbreak.
Home Secretary outlines support for domestic abuse victims
Please click here for more details
Advice for parents and carers on looking after the mental health and wellbeing of children or young people during the coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak.
Find out about temporary changes that may affect you if you’re applying for, or already getting, Tax-Free Childcare or 30 hours free childcare.
Furloughed workers planning to take paid parental or adoption leave will be entitled to pay based on their usual earnings rather than a furloughed pay rate
Temporary measures ensure critical workers will still be eligible for childcare offers if their income has changed due to coronavirus
Schools are open for vulnerable children
If your child has a child protection plan, is a child in need or a child in care, please take them to school after the Easter weekend, so long as they do not have an underlying health condition that puts them at risk of severe illness from coronavirus.
The government has announced there’ll be additional hardship funding to help towards Council Tax payments.
How can I qualify for hardship funding?
If you’ve already applied for Council Tax reduction (CTR) or you already have an active Housing Benefit or CTR claim, you can qualify for this funding,
If you don’t have a previous or active claim, please apply for Council Tax Reduction using our secure online portal. See View and make changes to your Benefit claim online to find out more about our online portal, how to setup an account and link it to your benefit claim.
The government has announced that those of Working Age and in receipt of Council Tax reduction, will receive an additional £150 payment on top of any Council Tax reduction award. Those with less than £150 liability will have a ‘nil’ bill.
We’re working hard to get this money applied to our current claims and we’ll issue revised bills in due course. You don’t need to apply for this extra funding directly.
What additional help is there if I still can’t afford my council tax?
If both your Council Tax reduction award and the £150 payment doesn’t fully cover your Council Tax charge, you can apply for additional help from the hardship fund. Please complete our Financial Information Sheet (also available under downloads and upload to your account using our online portal), or email it to us at email@example.com.
You don’t need to wait for your Council Tax Reduction application to be processed before you apply for the hardship payment, but we cannot award any additional help until we’ve received your Council Tax Reduction application.
To find out more
For further information about claiming Council Tax Reduction or Exceptional Hardship payments, please visit our Benefits section.
See also GOV.UK for a step by step guide on how to claim Universal Credit.
New Bounce Back Loans to launch Monday 4 May
CLICK HERE for full details.
The Government has announced the Self-employment Income Support Scheme (SEISS) to support self-employed individuals, including members of partnerships, whose incomes have been negatively impacted by COVID-19. Full details can be found on the Government business support website.
The government has announced two cash grant schemes. These will be conducted through by Mid-Devon District Council under the banner Business Rates Support Measures.
We’re awaiting detail from Central Government on the administration of these grants. This is expected within the next few days. To be clear, the Government are not expecting payments of these grants to be made until early April.
Scheme 1 – Business Support Grant Fund
Businesses that qualified for small business rate relief (SBRR) or rural rate relief on 11 March 2020, including those in receipt of tapered relief, will be eligible for a grant payment of £10,000.
Properties that are occupied for personal use (for e.g. private stables, beach huts, car parking spaces and personal storage) will not qualify, nor will those properties whose liability is calculated using the small business multiplier (this is shown on the business rates bill).
Scheme 2 – Retail, Hospitality and Leisure Business Grant Fund
Properties that would have qualified for the retail discount on 11 March 2020 will either be entitled to:
- £10,000 where the rateable value (RV) of the premises is £15,000 or less or;
- Up to £25,000 where the RV is greater than £15,000 but less than £51,000
- Premises with an RV above £51,000 are not eligible for this grant
Full Government guidance is available at GOV.UK – COVID-19: support for businesses.
Also CLICK HERE to view Government guidance for local authorities setting out details of the Small Business Grants Fund (SBGF) and Retail, Hospitality and Leisure Grant Fund (RHLGF)
Renting Your Home?
Other measures announced;
- Emergency legislation to suspend new evictions from social or private rented accommodation while this national emergency is taking place
- No new possession proceedings through applications to the court to start during the crisis
- Landlords will also be protected as 3 month mortgage payment holiday is extended to Buy to Let mortgages
Time to Talk
Mid Devon supports countywide Shielding Hub for the most vulnerable
Emergency food parcels have arrived in Devon to be distributed to the county’s most vulnerable residents, who have been told by the Government to ‘shield’ from coronavirus (COVID-19) for at least 12 weeks.
Residents and organisations across the district can now call a new hotline designed to help communities access vital information and support during the Coronavirus outbreak.
People can also use the number to volunteer their services and help out in their local area.
The number to call is 01884 234387 and the line will be open during office hours, Monday to Thursday from 8:30am to 5:00pm and Fridays from 8:30am until 4:30pm. It will be closed on Bank Holidays.
An online form is also available:
All drivers must have access to welfare facilities in the premises they visit as part of their work.
Some drivers have reported not being allowed to use welfare facilities when they deliver. Preventing access is against the law, equally it’s not the sensible thing to do.
There is a temporary relaxation of drivers’ hours regulations for those delivering
- non-food (personal care and household paper and cleaning)
- over the counter pharmaceuticals
There’s an even greater demand for Healthcare Assistants in Devon.
What’s important are your values and attitude towards working with people who need care, and your ability to cope in challenging environments.
The single most important action we can all take, in fighting coronavirus, is to stay at home in order to protect the NHS and save lives.
You should only leave the house for one of four reasons, and one of these is to provide care or to help a vulnerable person. Even when you are doing this, you need to do so safely. You should be minimising time spent outside of the home and ensuring you are 2 metres (6 feet) apart from anyone outside of your household.
Age Concern Crediton
While the Day Centre has had to close and clients are not being transported in there on weekdays, our staff are available in working hours Monday to Friday to offer advice and information by telephone or email. We also take orders for shopping or prescriptions to be delivered to the doorstep by our own staff.
Contact 01363 775008 or firstname.lastname@example.org
TRANSPORT FOR KEY WORKERS
Due to the reduction of bus services across the county, Devon County Council are trialling an on-demand subsidised taxi service for Devon residents for key workers accessing employment only.
This service is intended to replace those journeys which were previously made by bus – a subsidised flat fare will be charged.
Requests can only be made by email and should be sent to email@example.com
Please include the following information in your email:
- KEY WORKER STATUS
- EMPLOYER / PAYROLL REF
- JOURNEY REQUIREMENTS (pick up/drop off)
DCC will aim to respond to all requests as soon as possible during normal office hours – journeys should be booked 48 hours in advance of travel.
More information about the scheme is available on the DCC news centre.
To access the Stagecoach website directly, detailing temporary timetables, FAQs and information, please Click Here.