Daily Coronavirus Bulletin

Step 4 easing in England now in force. Devolved administrations continue to follow their own easing plans, similar to England’s although with some notable differences.

Haig Housing is operating fully but with some service restrictions

Daily Bulletin Thursday 23rd September 2021

MESSAGE BY TIM STOCKINGS, CHIEF EXECUTIVE

The Government has, with its Step 4 easing in England on Monday 19th July, lifted most previous restrictions including the mandatory wearing of facemasks and social distancing. This lifts most previous restrictions on how many may gather outside or indoors and permits shops, theatres, arenas, clubs and other places indoors where large numbers of people can gather in close proximity to re-open fully if they wish. However, caution remains the key word, especially with cases attributable to the more infectious Delta variant of the virus growing very quickly. While the vaccination programme has made a significant difference in those becoming ill and needing hospitalisation, numbers are nevertheless slowly rising, matched with a slow increase in deaths too. The devolved administrations will continue to follow their own plans in lifting restrictions which largely follow those in England though with some differences including in the wearing of face coverings and distancing. For separate plans for the devolved administrations, see advice links under the respective national administration below. It should also be noted that restrictions and testing requirements continue in place for those seeking to travel to (and return from) abroad and careful reference to these requirements - which vary between Green, Amber and Red list countries - should be sought in adequate time.

The coronavirus epidemic has had a significant impact on our lives and how the Trust operates. However, with the roll-out of the national vaccination programme, infection and mortality rates have declined significantly overall. Nevertheless, younger people who have not yet had both their vaccination shots as well as others who have not been vaccinated when offered should note the danger that the Delta variant of the virus brings not just to themselves (with the possibility of Long Covid symptoms in the future even if few may have been experienced while infected) and the possibility of infecting others who, while fully vaccinated, may nevertheless be re-infected and fall ill. It should be remembered that vaccination does not provide 100% efficacy and that people can still catch a variant of the virus and, in some instances, become ill.

Haig Housing’s Headquarters Office in Morden will remain closed for the time being, with most essential work being met by homeworking while partial return to work options for staff are considered. Reception will therefore remain closed, and all queries should continue to be made by telephone or email. While we continue to operate this changed service, we will nevertheless work hard to ensure that our services remain as close to normal as safely possible.

We all know that much will remain different and that we must accommodate living with coronavirus, possibly indefinitely. The Government in England and in the devolved administrations will undoubtedly monitor the situation closely and the Trust will therefore continue to be informed by all Government guidelines across the UK.

Using that same sense of mutual responsibility that we remember from when we were in the military, I ask you all please to continue to exercise caution as the country opens up after the strictures of the pandemic. Please follow closely Government guidance and do not take unnecessary risks - so that we continue to come through this together.

KEY POINTS TO NOTE

Alban Dobson House, Morden

  • Alban Dobson House is operating with reduced staff with most working from home. Please contact us by phone on 020 8685 5777 or by email to enquiries@haighousing.org.uk if you have any questions. A full out of hours repairs service continues to operate. The Trust will consider how, with Step 4 restrictions lifted, it may permit a progressive return of some staff to office working.
  • Staff and contractors who arrange to meet you will continue to wear face coverings and exercise social distancing unless you wish otherwise. Repairs will obviously continue to require access to your home under these conditions but if you do not wish an internal annual home visit when so notified, please inform us without delay so this may be discussed, and alternative arrangements made if appropriate.
  • Rent

  • We ask that you continue to make your rent payments so that we can continue our efforts to help our beneficiaries through these challenging times and to maintain your homes.
  • If you have difficulty in paying you should confirm that you have applied for all the Government assistance that is available. As we emerge further from the pandemic you should note that some support previously available from the Government in England and in the devolved administrations is coming to an end. If you have any concerns over meeting your rent you should contact our Income team without delay on 020 8685 5777, choosing Option 2, so we can offer you help, assistance and advice.
  • Whenever the Trust issues you with a rent increase notice, please remember to contact your bank or building society to increase any Standing Order you have in place for payment else you may go into arrears.
  • Universal Credit

    • PLEASE do not forget that if your rent has increased and you claim Universal Credit or Local Housing Allowance you must inform them of this change in your circumstances via your online journal or direct to your local authority respectively. Benefits will normally only backdate for 1 month, so it is important to action this quickly. Failure to do this may result in you going into arrears. This change will also need to be evidenced so if you need a copy of your rent increase notice, you should contact the Trust.
    • You can inform Universal Credit of a change to your rent from the Trust as follows:
    1. Log into your Universal Credit journal online.
    2. Chose, ‘Report a change of circumstance’.
    3. Chose where you live and what it costs.
    4. Click the button, ‘Something else’ - which shows your current charges.
    5. Click the green change button and enter your new figures and the date these changed.
    6. Save and exit.
    7. If you have any difficulties, please contact Universal Credit on 0800 328 5644.
    • If you are applying locally for Universal Credit, please note that Haig Housing Trust is a PRIVATE LANDLORD and not a Housing Association.

    Repairs and Maintenance

    • Please report all repairs by telephone to 020 8685 5777, choosing Option 1 or by email to enquiries@haighousing.org.uk. Calls will take longer to answer; please be patient as we will get to all calls in turn. Emergency and Urgent repairs will be prioritised with others undertaken as normal.
    • We will always respond in an emergency.
    • Our out of hours service remains available fully for emergency or very urgent repairs only but please listen carefully to any pre-recorded messages.
    • Contractors will continue to wear face coverings and exercise social distancing unless you are happy otherwise. Note that contractors will always follow those restrictions still required by some devolved administrations.

    Estate Visits

    • Estate visits by Housing Managers in person are now occurring though face coverings and social distancing will be observed unless you are happy otherwise. Note that staff will always follow those restrictions still required by some devolved administrations.
    • We will inform you when stock survey visits recommence.

    New Beneficiaries

    • Sign up of new beneficiaries are now occurring and will continue to be assessed on a case-by-case basis.

    Car Permits

    • Normal car permit requirements and their routine issue has resumed fully. Please contact your housing manager for further information should you need this.
    • YOU SHOULD NOTE THAT NORMAL PARKING ENFORCEMENT CONTINUES.

    Please check back to this website regularly for updates.

    OTHER USEFUL INFORMATION

    If you self-isolate

    If you self-isolate after being instructed to do so or are following Government guidelines, then please inform us without delay by telephone or email so that we can advise any contractor who may need to visit you.

    USEFUL DOCUMENTS

    General Coronavirus (Covid-19) Guidance - English

    General Coronavirus (Covid-19) Guidance – नेपाली Nepalese

    USEFUL LINKS

    PLEASE NOTE THAT WHILE MUCH OF THE ADVICE BELOW APPLIES TO ALL, SOME IS SPECIFIC TO ENGLAND ONLY. THEREFORE, IF YOU LIVE IN SCOTLAND, WALES, NORTHERN IRELAND OR JERSEY PLEASE ALSO CHECK THE SPECIFIC ADVICE GIVEN IN THE NATIONAL SECTIONS BELOW.

    Coronavirus - Government/NHS

    Government - Order free lateral flow test kit if you have no symptoms: here

    Government - Four step plan to ease lockdown restrictions in England: here

    Government - National Lockdown - How to stay safe and help prevent the spread. See here

    Government guidance for those who have been in contact with someone who has tested positive: here

    Government guidance for households with possible coronavirus infection: here

    Government advice on support for businesses incl for the self employed: here

    Government advice on new payments for people self-isolating in highest risk areas: here

    Government guidance on getting tested for Coronavirus: click here

    Government advice on Coronavirus: click here

    Government guidance for the public on mental health and wellbeing: click here

    Government advice on Coronavirus and domestic abuse: click here

    NHS advice on Test and Trace: here

    NHS advice on Coronavirus: click here

    Public Health England: A simple guide to staying at home: click here

    Every Mind Matters - Looking after your mental health at home: click here

    Income Support Self-Employed

    Government self-employment Income Support Scheme: click here

    Extremely Vulnerable People

    Government guidance on shielding and protecting people defined on medical grounds as extremely vulnerable from COVID-19: click here

    Get Coronavirus support as an extremely vulnerable person: click here

    Schools

    Online educational resources for schools and parents to help children to learn at home: click here

    Voucher scheme for schools to provide free school meals: click here

    Veterans Support

    Veterans UK open for business but with some changes: click here

    Veterans Gateway - Help if you have been affected by Covid-19: click here

    Volunteering

    To volunteer for the NHS: click here

    Scotland

    Latest Scottish Government advice: click here

    Coronavirus Strategic Framework Update 23 February 2021: here

    Ready Scotland - How to get and give help: click here

    Wales

    Welsh Government - general advice and information: click here

    Welsh Government - how to protect yourself and others: click here

    Northern Ireland

    NIDirect information: click here

    Northern Ireland Public Health Agency advice and information: click here

    Jersey

    Jersey Government - General advice: click here

    Jersey Government - health advice and information: click here

    Miscellaneous

    Obtain an NHS Isolation Note (in lieu of a GP Fitness to Work Note) for your employer: click here

    USEFUL HELPLINES

    Childline (www.childine.org.uk) offers support to children or young persons where domestic abuse is happening in the home or within a relationship and is free to call on 0800 1111

    Forcesline (www.ssafa.org.uk/get-help/forcesline) for serving personnel, Veterans and their families 0800 731 4880 (Mon to Fri 10.30am-7.30pm)

    Galop (www.galop.org.uk) provides an LGBT+ Domestic Abuse Helpline and is free to call on 0800 999 5428

    Hour Glass (www.wearehourglass.org) challenges the abuse of older people in all its forms and is free to call on 0808 808 8141

    Karma Nirvana (www.karmanirvana.org.uk) supports victims of honour based abuse and forced marriage and is free to call on 0800 5999 247 (Mon to Fri 9am–5pm)

    Men’s Advice Line (www.mensadviceline.org.uk) is a confidential helpline for male victims of domestic violence and those supporting them and is free to call on 0808 801 0327

    National Domestic Abuse 24/7 helpline, which offers support to victims and people affected by domestic abuse, is free to call on 0808 2000 247

    NHS 111 (www.111.nhs.uk) to access medical help fast but when it’s not a 999 emergency call 111 or in Wales 0845 4647.

    Samaritans (www.smaritans.org) provides 24/7 confidential emotional support for feelings of distress, despair or suicide thoughts 116 123

    Shout (www.giveusashout.org) is a crisis text support service for people in the military community who are struggling and need immediate support to get through a crisis. Text CONTACT to 85258

    The Respect Phoneline (www.respectphoneline.org.uk) provides confidential advice and support to help perpetrators stop being violent and abusive and is free to call 0808 802 4040

    Togetherall (www.togetherall.com/en-gb) is a safe 24/7 online service supporting your mental health in terms of anxiety, depression and other common mental health issues.

    Veterans Gateway (www.veteransgateway.org.uk) 24/7 first point of contact for Veterans seeking support, from healthcare and housing to employability, finances, personal relationships and more. 0800 802 1212

    Victim Support National 24/7 Supportline (www.victimsupport.org.uk) 08 08 16 89 111

    RAPID FLOW TESTS

    Rapid flow tests are provided free by the Government, to be used if: you do not have coronavirus symptoms, you live in England, are 18 or older, have not been told to self-isolate or you cannot get tests from your work, school, college or university (ask them for rapid lateral flow tests). The test are available from: