Young father from Sunderland left struggling waiting on Covid support payment

Credit: PA

A young father from Sunderland says he has been left struggling after being told there was 'at least' a three-week wait on Covid support payment.

Chris Dunn has a four-week-old baby and a young toddler, and applied for the Government provided money, after testing positive for the virus.

Unable to work and with no pay due to being agency staff, the 28 year-old was told he was eligible by Track and Trace at the start of his 10 day isolation - he's now back at work but has yet to receive any money.

Chris said: "10 days no work I've still got bills to pay a family to feed obviously all my car insurance to pay - things like that me bills don't stop just because I am not working."

The money from the Test and Trace Support Payment scheme is run by local councils. Credit: PA

Sunderland Council said they've approved payments of £690,000 in the last 18 months, and have to carry out checks to make sure people are eligible.

Councilor Paul Stewart said: "These checks can include contacting third parties, such as the employers of claimants, and we rely on this information to help confirm eligibility.

"We are continuing to make payments to all those eligible for support."

The Trade Union - The TUC - have called the scheme "badly designed, poorly funded and poorly promoted" and called for change.

  • Alex Collinson from the Trades Union Congress:

A spokesperson from the Government said: "We recognise this is an incredibly difficult time for many people and we launched the Test and Trace Support Payment to help those who cannot work from home to self-isolate.

"The government has made more than £176 million available to local authorities to make these payments.

Most people in England will now be able to avoid self-isolation, so long as they do not test positive for coronavirus. Credit: PA

From Monday 16 August people who are double jabbed or aged under 18 will no longer have to self-isolate if they are identified as a close contact of a positive Covid-19 case.

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