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Covid-19: Welfare Support

Volume 688: debated on Monday 25 January 2021

What steps her Department is taking to help ensure that people with disabilities and health conditions can safely access welfare support during the covid-19 outbreak. (911265)

Work coaches are empowered to support claimants through the best and most appropriate channels, whether online, by phone or in person, with jobcentres remaining open to those who need extra support and are unable to interact with us on the phone or digitally.

A number of my constituents in Southend West who suffer from mental or physical disabilities do not have access to computers or the internet. Many of them rely on in-person support in normal times, through places such as the citizens advice bureau or the wonderful Kings Money Advice Centre. With many in these vulnerable groups unfortunately now shielding, what assurances can my hon. Friend give me that support is being made accessible to those without online access?

My hon. Friend is a strong advocate for supporting his most vulnerable claimants and his local advocacy groups. As I have set out, we will look at the most appropriate way to communicate with claimants, including by phone or through advocates, where they do not have access to the internet.