Lutfur Rahman: We will award Crisis Grants
By Lutfur Rahman
April 1 is traditionally the time for April Fool jokes. But for thousands of people in our borough experiencing life at the sharp end, the huge welfare changes announced by the Government on April 1 are no laughing matter. As Mayor, I am determined that my administration will do all it can to continue to protect the vulnerable in our borough.
The council is now providing financial support to some of the most vulnerable residents through new Crisis and Support Grants.
These replace the grants that used to be provided by Job Centres and the Department for Work & Pensions; they are limited and there are strict eligibility criteria.
Crisis Grants will be made available to those who have experienced a sudden change in circumstances, or who are at risk of one.
Welfare reform workshops have been held for more than 300 front line workers to help them prepare residents for these changes.
More than 600 people attended a Money Matters Month event during November, where they received one-to-one employment, housing and financial advice.
A further 120 attended a Financial Inclusion Event, held in partnership with One Housing on March 16, and further events are scheduled as the changes start to take effect.
■ Lutfur Rahman is executive mayor of Tower Hamlets Council