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Emergency Support Scheme

The Emergency Support Scheme - Information for Customers

From April 2013, Enfield’s Emergency Support Scheme will provide funding to prevent imminent and serious risk to the health and safety of an individual or their family.  This will ease severe financial pressure in families facing crisis or support people to establish themselves in the community or help them stay in the community.

This help was formally provided by the Department of Work and Pensions (DWP) as a Crisis Loan or Community Care Grant.

All payments are discretionary and will be assessed on an individual basis.

Do you qualify for an Emergency Payment?

To qualify for an Emergency Payment the following criteria will apply:

  • You must be 16 or over
  • You should normally be resident in Enfield for a minimum of 6 weeks, unless, you are leaving care following a period in an institution, hospital or residential home and have a local connection to Enfield or are being moved as part of a resettlement programme.
  • You must be responsible for either Housing costs or Council Tax payments.
  • You must be in receipt of a qualifying State Benefit and must not be an excluded person or seeking help for an excluded item.
  • You must not have any savings or access to personal loans that will meet your needs.
  • You must not be eligible for a short term advance or budgeting loan from the DWP.
  • You must also not have received a previous Emergency Payment in the past 6 months.
  • You must be willing to attend a money management course run by Enfield Citizens Advice Bureau, as a condition of receiving support for specific needs.

Local Assistance Grants 

These grants may be given to people who need help to establish themselves in the Community after a period in an institution, hospital or residential home or used to help people stay in the community rather than enter institutional care.

They may also be used to help people set up home, as part of a planned resettlement process to care for a prisoner or young offender on temporary release or to ease exceptional pressure on a family.

Payments in this category will be made to cover the cost of furniture and white goods, connecting appliances or essential family expenditure to deal with an unexpected crisis.

A 12 month condition will be applied if you have received a previous grant in the last 12 months. A maximum amount of £1,000 will be agreed.

All other criteria will be the same as for an Emergency Payment.

What is not covered by the Emergency Support Scheme?

The following needs cannot be met through the Emergency Support Scheme:

  • a need which occurs outside the United Kingdom
  • an educational or training need including clothing and tools
  • distinctive school uniform or sports clothes for use at school or equipment to be used at school
  • travelling expenses to or from school
  • school meals taken during school holidays by children who are entitled to free school meals
  • expenses in connection with court (legal proceedings) such as legal fees, court fees, fines, costs, damages, subsistence or travelling expenses
  • removal or storage charges if you are being re-housed following a compulsory purchase order, a redevelopment or closing order, a compulsory exchange of tenancies, or under homelessness legislation
  • domestic assistance and respite care
  • any repair to Council property 
  • a medical, surgical, optical, aural or dental item or service (needs under all of these headings can be provided free of charge by the National Health Service, if you are getting Income Support, income-based Jobseeker’s Allowance, Employment and Support Allowance (income-related), or Pension Credit)
  • work related expenses
  • debts to government departments
  • investments
  • costs of purchasing, renting or installing a telephone and of any call charges
  • any expense which the local authority has a statutory duty to meet
  • costs of fuel consumption and any associated standing charges
  • housing costs (other than random costs not met by Housing Benefit, Income Support, income based Job Seekers Allowance, income based Employment and Support Allowance, or Pension Credit), certain rent in advance payments, boarding charges and minor repairs and improvements
  • council tax or water charges
  • mobility needs
  • holidays
  • a television or a radio or a licence, aerial or rental charges for a television or a radio

What type of support is provided?

We will decide on the type of support needed and how much is given based on the information you provide us.  The way we offer support will include:

  • Vouchers for a local supermarket for specific items.
  • Referral to a second hand furniture provider for furniture and white goods.
  • Cash in very limited circumstances.

Why would my application be refused?

There are several reasons why your application may be refused.  We may decide that there are other ways of meeting your needs or that the item or service you need is not covered under the Scheme. 

While we wish to meet the needs of all eligible applicants demand and need is uncertain and we may not be able to fund more than the high and medium categories of need and a small proportion of low category needs.  Should demand exceed the funding available, low category needs may not be supplied.

What happens if I don't agree with your decision?

If you disagree with our decision you can ask us to reconsider.  You should write to us within four weeks of our decision letter to you, explaining why you do not agree with our decision.  A different Officer will review your application. 

As this Scheme is discretionary you have no right of appeal and our final decision will stand.

If you would like to apply for an Emergency Payment or a Local Assistance Grant please follow the attached link.   

Pre-screening application form

Emergency Support Scheme Policy

Free internet access is available at all libraries, The Civic centre, John Wilkes House and the Edmonton Centre.

If you need help to make a claim please contact either the Citizen’s Advice Bureau on 020 8375 4170 between 10:00am and 4:00pm or contact your local advice agency or community group.   

This page was last updated on 10-Jun-2014.

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