Highland Council Help For Hospitality And Tourism Workers Affected By Covid19 Crisis
20th March 2020
The Highland Council is urging those from the hospitality and tourism sector who have been adversely affected by the coronavirus crisis to get in touch for support.
The Highlands has a large seasonal workforce, many living in ties accommodation provided by their employer.
The local authority is aware there may be individuals who have lost employment and potentially accommodation following decisions made by some businesses.
Housing staff and the Department of Work and Pensions have already said they will assist the Council where appropriate. Local community centres, hotels and hostels have also said they would assist with accommodation and food where necessary.
Council Leader, Bill Lobban said: "We realise that many employers are economically affected by the Coronavirus and are having to make very difficult decisions about their businesses. We would urge any employer with staff in tied housing to contact us if they do not think they can sustain tied tenancies. That will allow our housing and welfare benefit staff to discuss housing options and avoid unnecessary homelessness. It will also allow us to ensure the welfare of people affected."
For further information from The Highland Council please telephone 01349 886606. Information is also available on our website https://www.highland.gov.uk/info/997/housing_advice/245/homelessness
The Highland Council is working hard to release business grants to eligible local businesses as quickly as possible. The Council has received over 2,000 applications since the scheme was introduced last week and has set up systems to process these applications quickly while ensuring the necessary information is received.
Since The Highland Council's dedicated helpline went live last Wednesday afternoon staff have dealt with over 1,600 calls. The helpline has been set to give assistance and to collect details of individuals and community groups looking to provide volunteering support.
Council tax payers in Highland who have lost their jobs or are experiencing a drop in their income are being encouraged to apply as quickly as possible for a reduction in their council tax. This help, known as the ‘Council Tax Reduction Scheme', is available for lower income households, including home owners.
Around 19,000 business rate payers in Highland will not receive their annual rates bill this April. The Highland Council recognises the exceptional economic challenges for local business and has therefore decided to pause business rates bills in respect of financial year 2020/21.
What is 'shielding'? If you fall within one of the groups recommended to shield, you will have received a letter or text from the NHS. Shielding is a measure to protect extremely vulnerable people by minimising contact between those who are extremely vulnerable and others.
During this time of restrictions it is important that we all stay active, for our physical health and mental well being. Recreation outside is an important element of this, but it is essential that each of us practice good social distancing while outside.
The Highland Council has launched a free helpline to give assistance and to collect details of individuals and community groups looking to provide volunteering support during Covid19. The single line number - 0300 303 1362 - will connect callers to relevant Council specialist teams and will operate Monday to Friday from 8am to 6pm.
Highland Council will be providing e-vouchers to families to support access to free school meals from week commencing 30 March 2020. This innovative and easy-to-use service will ensure over 4,000 school children will continue to receive support for school meals while schools are closed.
The Council has been working at pace to set up centres for the children of key workers. Anyone who has applied for a place at one of the key worker hubs in the Highland Council area will be contacted by the end of today (Wednesday 25th) with confirmation of the arrangements that have been put in place.
THE HELPLINE GOES LIVE TODAY FROM 2:00pm ONWARDS. The Highland Council has launched a free helpline to give assistance and to collect details of individuals and community groups looking to provide volunteering support during Covid19.
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