Advice Providers Network meeting 3/3/14

Ruth went to the meeting last week for HHAG. Here are brief notes from the meeting:

Haringey: council tax: letters going out. Asked about re-instating 100%  council tax benefit – decision for this year to stay the same & it was up to councilors. 517 outstanding new claims for housing benefit & council tax reduction. Discretionary Housing Payment ’14/’15 funding similar to ’13/’14 approx £2.5 millions. All spent this year on about 2,400 cases.

Bedroom tax -loophole cases 350 applicants, 200 looked at so far of which 35 rejected as non-continuous entitlement (17%).

Customer services: working with  AGILISIS to restructure – more on line access to accounts and services in 2015.

2,920 families in temporary accommodation – An increase in homelessness because of welfare changes and Private Rented Sector (PRS) evictons. Looking at 2 year tenancies in PRS. Criminalisation of rough sleepers – not being considered.

Homeless prevention fund- small grants to use to save evictions – e.g. pay arrears, pay for hoarding clearence etc. Denise Gaudi willing to visit group to explain.  has been to the private tenants group already

benefit cap- by 7.2.14 – 594 families being capped. 352 of which with children.

Coram childrens legal centre: Talk about legal aid cuts & assylum/immigration law for children.  They offer other  legal services where children involved too.

DWP Dee Sebunki: Haringey DWP officer.  Universal Credit – Sounds like DWP backing off on monthly payments so 2 weekly payments and payments direct to landlords will be possible – but will be special cases. Likely to be implemented in Haringey in 2017.

Working Tax Credit hours will still apply for benefit capping but hours may change. When going to review meetings can have some one with you e.g. a friend.

Haringey Migrant Support Centre – Carolina gave a talk, Mondays 1-4 pm at west green road – starting Enfield group look for a health advocate.

Future Meetings every quarter on Tuesdays. 1st week June next meeting.

Good Advice Haringey  - an umbrella group for advice services – Common referral system – training requested by groups -  on line HUB for people and organisations -  funded by HAVCO and lottery. Launch 3/4/2014 at 10.30 at 639 High Road, Tottenham.

March 11, 2014  Tags:   Posted in: INFORMATION