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COVID-19 (Coronavirus)

This is affecting us all at work and at home. We’re working hard to keep services running and will focus our efforts on the most critical elements. In doing so disruption to many services is likely.

Read our latest update

COVID-19 (Coronavirus) community support and advice

Your questions answered

I already have friends/family members who can support me. Should I be getting additional support?

We would encourage you to let your friends/family support you.

This will mean that we can focus on ensuring support is accessible to others who are in need and vulnerable.

I am looking for advice/information on how to do my shopping as I am self isolating or in the vulnerable group

Here is information on food shopping for over 70s and NHS workers

Good Neighbourhoods Coventry also have additional information about local store arrangements.

In addition in a lot of areas of the City Community Groups are helping residents with their shopping if they are unable to get it themselves. There is a map which will identify if there are any groups in your area that you could contact.

I am self isolating/or in the vulnerable group and someone has offered to go shopping on my behalf, what should I do?

Here are some top tips from Age UK to help get the essentials you need:

  • Make a list of the things you need day-to-day, including food, household essentials and medication.
  • If someone claims to be from a recognised organisation, ask to see proof or check with the organisation itself.
  • If someone you don’t know offers you help with your shopping don’t feel pressured to accept help.
  • If someone offers to do your shopping, ask for a receipt so that you can pay them on their return to cover the costs of the items.
  • If you do accept help never hand-over money, bank details or cards to someone you don’t know offering to help you, where possible arrange to give them a cheque as reimbursement when they return. If you need to give them cash do this when they return once you have the receipt and shopping.
  • There is no need to stockpile. Shops and pharmacies will keep refreshing their supplies and many have introduced measures to reduce stockpiling.
  • It may take longer than usual to receive online deliveries to your home, so plan ahead, particularly if you usually have prescriptions delivered. If you have any concerns about your medication, talk to your pharmacist.

How do I find out what local support is available? I would like to know what support is available to me but would like to speak to someone, who should I contact?

There is a map available that has information about the community support groups we are aware of that are operating in the city.

If you are unable to find a group in your area you can contact: 08085 834333

I have a medical condition which makes me extremely vulnerable to COVID-19 (Coronavirus). What support is available to me?

Central Government as part of Operation Shield has provided the council with the details of people who have a medical condition which makes them extremely vulnerable to COVID-19 (Coronavirus), and you should have been contacted.

If you have not been identified as part of this work you can register with GOV.UK. If you are eligible for Operation Shield you will then also need to speak to your Doctor or Clinical Technician.

If you are not eligible then you can find information about local groups which may be able to assist you.

I am part of a group or know of a group in my area that is helping support residents, how can I help spread the word?

If the group you are part of or aware of is not included on our community support map then please let us know using the online submission form.

I want to volunteer to help support residents in my area, how do I do this?

If you have not already volunteered to help a local support group or the NHS volunteers list and want to volunteer to offer your help locally please complete our online offer of help form and we will contact you when an opportunity is identified.

Please remember though if you are volunteering to help someone, you should take steps to make sure you don't contribute to the spread of coronavirus. These include:

  • If you feel at all unwell, do not volunteer to help others who are self-isolating;
  • Wash your hands regularly, especially before and after you deliver any items to a person in isolation;
  • If you make a delivery, stay two metres away from people you meet. Place the items outside their door and then step away;
  • Be careful about how you share personal information about yourself and other people. Avoid sharing your or a vulnerable person's address and other contact information in public groups or documents;
  • Try to support people who live close to you - so you don't travel larger distances.

GOV.UK safeguarding factsheet: Community volunteers during COVID-19 outbreak

I need help about my benefits/debt and I am not sure where to go?

You can contact the Benefits team for advice and support if your income has been affected by COVID-19 (Coronavirus), email [email protected] or call 024 7683 1800.

Find out about support grants or crisis awards online, email [email protected] or call 024 7683 3773.

The Coventry Independent Advice Service is also able to provide free benefits and debt advice to Coventry residents throughout the Coronavirus pandemic. Advice and support is now available via an online enquiry form, and by telephone on 07923 126 426 or 07923 126 430. Lines are open 9 am to 7 pm each weekday (except Wednesday afternoons when lines close at 1pm). They are also introducing a ‘live chat’ option on their website. Visit their website for details of how to make contact. Their website also contains links to other sources of help and information that is available during this period

Coventry Citizens Advice are providing telephone advice through their Advice Line 03444 111 444 and email advice through the enquiries team. Most projects run by Coventry Citizens Advice such as the specialist debt advice and the Macmillan team, are still operational. Details on how to contact the project teams

Coventry Law Centre continue to provide legal advice services to the community and can be contacted for telephone enquiries Monday - Friday 10am - 3pm on 024 7622 3053.

I can’t pay my Council Tax. What can I do?

If you are finding it difficult as a result of the Covid-19 outbreak to pay your Council Tax you should contact the Council Tax Team to discuss alternative payment arrangements.

That could include delaying payments for a further two months, so annual bills would run from June to March, rather than April to January as normal.

If you are concerned about making your Council Tax payments find out about the support available in relation to Council Tax if you have been impacted by COVID-19 (Coronavirus).

I need help regarding Domestic abuse or violence/ I am concerned about someone who may be suffering from domestic abuse or violence what can I do?

The current situation with coronavirus can bring frightening and lonely times, you are not alone contact.

The Safe to Talk helpline is available Monday to Friday 8.30am - 5.30pm and Saturday to Sunday, 10am - 1pm. For support call 0800 111 4998.

If you are concerned about some who may be suffering from domestic abuse or violence then you can also contact this helpline.

English is not my first language can I access information in other languages?

Yes you can, here is information which has been made available in other languages and easy to read formats.

I want to donate food to Coventry Foodbank how can I do this?

You will find at many of the larger supermarkets there are foodbank donation points after the checkouts. These are still being collected and taken to the Coventry distribution centre.

You can find out more by asking your local supermarket staff or by visiting the Trussell Trust website. Their page on donating food also tells you which types of food they need the most.

I am concerned about fraud/scams related to Covid 19. What advice is available about this?

If you are concerned about scams related to Covid 19 you may find the tips below helpful:

  • Be cautious and listen to your instincts. If you receive an unexpected visitor use a safety chain when answering the door or speak through a window. Don’t be afraid to hang up, bin it, delete it or shut the door.
  • Avoid letting anyone you don’t know into your home.
  • Take your time; don’t be rushed.
  • If someone claims to represent a charity, ask them for ID. Be suspicious of requests for money up front. If someone attempts to talk you into accepting a service they are unlikely to be genuine. Check with family and friends before accepting offers of help if you are unsure.
  • If you are online, be aware of fake news and use trusted sources such as gov.uk or NHS.uk websites. Make sure you type the addresses in and don’t click on links in emails.
  • Only purchase goods from legitimate retailers and take a moment to think before parting with money or personal information.
  • Protect your financial information, especially from people you don’t know. Never give your bank card or PIN to a stranger.

Contact information

Please report any cold calling of doorstep traders and canvassers to the police non-emergency number 101 or the Citizens Advice Consumer Service on 0808 223 1133.

  • If you think you’ve been scammed, report it to Action Fraud on 0300 123 2040 and contact your bank.
  • If you are in immediate danger, contact the police on 999.
  • If you have vulnerable and/or elderly neighbours please keep an eye out to see who is attending their property and report anything suspicious to 101.

Read further information.

What businesses can remain open?

Here is the current government guidance on what premises have to close and the exceptions.

If any ‘permitted’ premises are choosing to remain open then they should be putting in controls to ensure social distancing is being adhered to, such as limiting how many people are in the shop at one time, using tape on the floor to mark out safe distances (2 metres apart), taking only contactless and/or telephone card payments where possible. Staff (including delivery drivers) should take the relevant precautionary hygiene measures, such as effective regular handwashing, hand sanitisers, use of gloves, face masks (where possible), regular and effective cleaning especially of touch points and surfaces and ensuring all staff follow the guidelines if they are showing any symptoms.

Further information

I am receiving a food parcel as part of the Governments Operation Shield but I do not need it how can I cancel it? 

You need to reregister and answer ‘yes’ to the question ‘Do you have a way of getting essential supplies delivered at the moment?’. This will not affect an individual’s supermarket priority status. 

I am experiencing issues with:

  • Welfare Benefits
  • Housing
  • Health and Social Care
  • Child and Family Law
  • Immigration and Asylum
  • Employment
  • Discrimination and Public Law

The Law Centre is a charity that employs lawyers with expertise in social welfare law. This is the law that affects every day life and covers the areas mentioned. They can be contacted on between 10am and 3pm on 024 7622 3053, or via email to [email protected]  

 

 

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