Welfare checks for hundreds of vulnerable people

Welfare checks for hundreds of vulnerable people

By Gareth Dennison | 18/05/2020

Welfare checks for hundreds of vulnerable people

SOCIAL workers keeping track of vulnerable Rotherham children during the pandemic made 870 face-to-face visits in a week.

A risk assessment tool is used by RMBC staff to establish it is safe to call round in person, the council said.

The aim is not to lose the close contact with families who might need the highest level of support through the current time.

Cllr Gordon Watson, cabinet member for children's services said: "Over 90 per cent of visits have actually been in person, following the rules with PPE and social distancing.

"We are actually making sure that we are there physically, checking on he children and families that we know need the support.

"Talking to some of my colleagues online in other authorities, that's actually a very high percentage. 

"Most are doing more virtual visits so I think we ought to be proud, like we always are, about our social workers."

One of the major pieces of work in the council's housing service has been to call and check on all tenants over 70.

Cllr Dominic Beck, cabinet member for housing, said: "So far, we have completed over 2,000 calls. This has resulted in some really positive outcomes and referrals. 

"And where people haven't needed support, they have certainly appreciated the council's efforts."

The policy of keeping contact in this way would continue as lockdown conditions are eased, he added.
And while rough sleepers have been accommodated by RMBC, there has been a rise in the number of households becoming homeless.

Cllr Dominic Beck, cabinet member for housing, said: "We are now up to nearly 400 cases. 

"To offer reassurance, we are still discharging our duties laid out in law to support all those people who do fall on hard times and need to contact the council for our support and ultimately a roof over their heads."

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