10:50 AM, 22nd October 2020, About A year ago 1
Citizens Advice is reporting on a series of gaps in protections in England that do not align with the coronavirus lockdown tiers and that in some areas, particularly rent and council tax, the lack of broad national protections could see people at risk of falling behind on vital bills.
The only increase in protection for tenants under tier 2 or 3 is that Bailiffs shouldn’t enter properties to execute warrants
Citizens Advice is calling for:
People in tier 2 and 3 areas who are facing eviction should be given at least one month’s notice when local restrictions come to an end before they are made to leave their home.
A national programme of government-backed grants and loans for tenants struggling to pay their rent because of the pandemic. Tier 3 areas should be prioritised for new grants.
Jamie McGlynn, Local Service Manager at Citizens Advice Manchester, says: “Now that many of the protections have been lifted, we’re seeing a surge in people contacting us for help as bailiffs, debt letters and eviction notices start up again.
“Added to that, there have been a lot of redundancies announced in recent weeks and many people we help are working reduced hours because of the impact of the first lockdown.
“If we move into the “Very High” tier without further protections in place, I’m worried about a perfect storm where people already struggling to keep their head above water financially are going to really suffer.”
“We’re also seeing lots of people whose income has dropped to nothing as they self-isolate. They’re hugely worried about the possibility of missing vital bills or running up rent arrears.”
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