Coronavirus

We have set up a dedicated Coronavirus/COVID-19 webpage. Click here or go to www.newcastle.gov.uk/coronavirus

Coronavirus: Support for people

UPDATED 3 April 2020 16.33

The single most important action we can all take, in fighting coronavirus, is to stay at home in order to protect the NHS and save lives.

When we reduce our day-to-day contact with other people, we will reduce the spread of the infection.

The latest Government advice on staying at home and away from others is here.

On this page

Coronavirus: Signs and symptoms

Information in other languages and formats 

Disruption to council services

Support for households
- Citylife Line
- Council tax support
- Help to feed yourself and your family
- Mental health support
- Money advice
- Pharmacies
- Rent support
- Scams awareness
- Waste disposal and cleaning advice

Support for businesses

Support for workers
- Support for the self employed
- Support if you’ve been made redundant or your hours reduced
- Help to find work
- Welfare support

Coronavirus: Signs and symptoms

The most common symptoms of coronavirus (COVID-19) are recent onset of a new continuous cough and/or high temperature. 

Go here for the latest advice from government including coronavirus symptoms, what to do if you or someone you live with has symptoms and advice for at risk groups including people who have an immune or respiratory condition, are pregnant or over 70-years-old.

Our Director of Public Health, Eugene Milne, explains more about self-isolating:

Information in other languages and formats

Doctors of the World, in partnership with the British Red Cross, Migrant Help and Clear Voice, have produced advice on Coronavirus (COVID-19) in 36 languages.  

The guidance is based on the government’s updated advice and health information and can be found on the Doctors of the World website.

The Deaf Charity SignHealth are publishing updates on Coronavirus (COVID-19) in British Sign Language (BSL) every day.  We are sharing these on sharing these on Facebook and Twitter or you can find all previous updates on the SignHealth website.

Disruption to council services

Details of changes to our services can be found on our Coronavirus: Council Service Disruption page.

As council staff become sick and resources become stretched, staff will be reallocated to ensure essential services continue with minimal disruption and the most vulnerable members of our society continue to receive the care they need.

If you are trying to contact us we currently have a slightly reduced phone service and therefore call waiting times may be longer than usual.

If you can please check our webpages for information first and, where possible, use our online forms or email instead of calling.

Support for households

Citylife Line

Citylife Line is a new service that has been launched to help harness the outpouring of goodwill from residents in Newcastle who want to help the most vulnerable during the COVID-19 outbreak. 

The service has been set up with partners in the voluntary and community sector for people wanting to volunteer their time, while also providing a service for people to register their need for assistance.

For more information please see our Citylife Line page.

Council tax (from council tax support)

We are continuing to collect council tax, but if you are struggling to pay then please get in touch using our online enquiry forms or email us council.tax@newcastle.gov.uk.  

If your income has changed due to Coronavirus you may be entitled to council tax reduction. Please see our Council Tax Reductions page for more information.

For those who are self-isolating and cannot go to the Post Office or use an automated payment line to pay we will accept payments over the phone. Please call 0191 278 7878.

Further information on how we can help you can be found here.

Help to feed yourself and your family

Residents who find themselves needing access to free or low-cost food, care or other essential items during the coronavirus outbreak should visit www.informationnow.org.uk to find out what is available (This changing daily thanks to the response of local voluntary groups).

Children eligible for free school meals will receive meals or vouchers if they can no longer attend school due to coronavirus measures.

Mental health support

Tyneside and Northumberland Mind may be able to help you access wellbeing support.

Money advice

Banking - Many banks are offering flexibilities and support. Please speak to your bank directly to find out what support is available.

Citizens Advice - Newcastle Citizens Advice Bureau are offering online and telephone advice. Please visit their website, www.citizensadvice-newcastle.org.uk, for more information.

Energy - Contact your supplier to ask for help to meet energy bills, or arrange pre-payments

Mortgages - You may be able to agree a three-month mortgage payment holiday. Contact your mortgage provider to find out more.

Pharmacies

Many pharmacies have now changed their opening hours. Please check with your local pharmacy.

Rent support

The government has put in to place emergency legislation to suspend evictions from social or private rented accommodation to support families who are facing financial difficulty because of the current circumstance. 

Your Homes Newcastle and Newcastle City Council will continue to follow official Government guidance with regards to any actions that need to be taken and the potential financial impact that the outbreak may have on our tenants and residents. 

Contact your landlord to discuss your situation, or contact our Private Rented Service for further advice.

Scams awareness

In common with most other crisis situations, criminals are using emails, text messages, social media posts, online advertisements and phone calls to defraud unsuspecting victims.

For the latest information on scams to be aware of, and ensuring you and your family are safe online, visit www.getsafeonline.org/northumbria/

Waste disposal and cleaning advice

Help keep your household safe with guidance on cleaning and how to dispose of your waste.

Support for businesses

The latest information on Government support for businesses can be found here.

You can also find how eligible businesses can get fast access to funding  via our Coronavirus: Support for businesses page.

Support for workers

Support for the self-employed

The Self-Employed Support Scheme (SEISS) may allow you to claim a taxable grant worth 80% of your trading profits up to a maximum of £2,500 per month for the next 3 months.

If you are not eligible for the SEISS, you may be entitled to Universal Credit or statutory sick pay.

People who have been made redundant, laid off or given reduced hours

Government will be paying 80% of wage costs of employees not working due to Covid-19, up to £2,500 per month, through the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme, so redundancies and business failures should be avoidable.

If you are made redundant, normal redundancy rules apply so you are entitled to notice or pay in lieu of notice, and redundancy pay from your employer.

If your employer is insolvent, you can claim for these due payments through the Insolvency Service.

If you are already claiming Universal Credit, this should automatically adjust to reflect changes to people’s earnings or other income.  

Help to find work

Due to a very high level of new claims, JobCentre Plus may not be able to provide as much help to find work as usual.

We recommend using our Skills Hub partnership website at www.skillshubnewcastle.co.uk/jobs for help, advice and guidance to find work.

Welfare support

The Standard Allowance available on Universal Credit is being increased by £1,000 per year, as is the Working Tax Credit, and Jobcentre Plus is streamlining access to benefits.

You can apply online for Universal Credit or contact JobCentre Plus to find out more.

For more information about the support available check out our welfare rights advice page, Universal Credit page and Coronavirus and benefits page.

And if you need further support contact our dedicated advice line on 0191 277 2627.

Did you know?

In the current situation we are all being asked to stay at home. However this may cause implications for some people regarding domestic abuse. If you have concerns there is advice that may help

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