Mayor of Hackney Philip Glanville has called for further Government support for the Council’s coronavirus response after forecasts showed existing funding would cover less than half of vital frontline services.
Additional costs of delivering essential adult and children’s social care, education and support for homeless families during the pandemic, as well as maintaining other services like waste collections, could reach around £36million in the next three months alone.
The borough is expected to receive only £17m from emergency Government support announced so far, with millions being invested in social care, support for rough sleepers, an emergency food delivery programme – and grants, rebates, hardship funds and voluntary sector rent suspensions already being applied as part of the Council’s support packages for residents and businesses.
The forecasts were explained in a report agreed by an emergency meeting of the Council’s Cabinet this afternoon, which also earmarked investment in frontline services this year to help the fight against coronavirus, including:
£7m for adult social care to support vulnerable residents
£4m for education and children’s social care services
£1.6m for homelessness work, including emergency accommodation for rough sleepers
Over £5m on in Council Tax reductions and emergency support for families in hardship
A £100,000 hardship fund for migrants and refugees who do not have access to welfare or other support under Government rules
Mayor Glanville will take part in a live #GrillPhil Q&A on Facebook and Twitter on Thursday 23 April, from 1.45-2.45pm. Submit your questions using the hashtag.
The Council launched dedicated financial support packages to help the borough through the pandemic last month. Around 20,000 families and individuals on low incomes have received up to £150 off their Council Tax bill, with an extra £500,000 added to the Council’s Discretionary Crisis Support Scheme that supports households with emergency needs.
More than £30m in coronavirus grants have been paid to nearly 2,000 businesses so far, alongside business rate relief and suspension of many fees and charges. Rent for the Council’s commercial tenants has also been deferred.
For the latest information about the Council’s coronavirus response, to get support and to sign up for email updates, visit the coronavirus page.