Leader urges residents and businesses to seek help

Residents and businesses affected by the coronavirus outbreak are being urged to seek help by the Leader of Malvern Hills District Council.

Cllr Sarah Rouse said staff and councillors were working flat out to support people through the outbreak.

She said: "I have lost my job as a result of the outbreak so I know how difficult and worrying this situation is for people. The good news is there is a range of support available.

"Nobody needs to go through this alone. Please do get in touch with us. We are ready and here to help you through this."

  • Anyone struggling financially is urged to make a claim for Universal Credit, Council Tax Support and any other benefits they may be entitled to. Check if you are eligible at www.gov.uk/coronavirus
  • People of working age and claiming Council Tax support will receive a one-off reduction of up to £150. More details on the Malvern Hills District Council website.
  • Retail, leisure and hospitality businesses will receive an automatic 100% discount on their Business Rates Bills. This will be applied automatically and new bills issued. Discounts are also available for pubs and nurseries.
  • Grants of between £10,000 and £25,000 are available to qualifying businesses. Businesses need to register their details on the Malvern Hills District Council website. More than 500 businesses have already logged their details.
  • Self-employed people can get help through the Government's self-employed income support grant which is being administered by HMRC.
  • Details of other support available for businesses including how they can claim funding from the Government to pay the wages of staff is available at www.malvernhills.gov.uk/business
  • Our housing team has offered temporary accommodation to all known rough sleepers across the district and continues to offer advice and practical support to those in emergency need

Council staff are also playing an important role co-ordinating the community and voluntary sector response across the district, working with county, district, town and parish councillors. This effort has focused on identifying anyone vulnerable needing help with accessing food or essentials.

Any resident who does not already have support from family and friends, adult social care or anther community group and needs help should fill in the form at www.worcestershire.gov.uk/here2help or call 01905 768053.

People who would like to offer help to support their community during the outbreak can also register by filling in the form on the website.

Staff are working hard to maintain critical services including waste and recycling collections. These remain unaffected currently, although bulky waste collections have been stopped until further notice.

Residents are being asked to support crews by not carrying out house, shed or garage clearances at the moment unless they can store the waste created for a period of time. Crews cannot take extra waste as it would overwhelm the service.

Committee meetings have been cancelled and the Council House reception has been closed but people can still email or call.

Visit www.malvernhills.gov.uk/coronavirus to find out about the latest support available for residents and businesses and the impact the outbreak is having on our services.

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