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Our fuel poverty campaign No Cold Homes came to an end this week. Through the campaign, we have been promoting the support available for people who can’t afford to heat their homes this winter.

Thanks to all those who promoted the campaign through their social media channels and other networks, and helped to make it a success. Here is a round-up of the key highlights.

Keep an eye out for details of our next campaign in the New Year!

Supporting more people in need

No Cold Homes highlighted the support available through welfare benefits, charitable grants and other help to anyone struggling with their energy costs this winter.

Hitting the headlines

The campaign launched with new research uncovering that half of low income households are struggling with energy costs, despite being in work. The findings were covered extensively in the media, with articles in the Independent, The Observer, Evening Standard and The Mirror, interviews on ITV and STV News and mentions across regional newspapers and websites.

Our research findings were also heavily mentioned in a fuel poverty debate in Westminster and several MPs have promoted the campaign within their areas.

You may have also spotted our campaign posters, featuring across 50 London Underground stations, which are further raising awareness of the issue.

Going once…

The second part of our campaign focused on our celebrity clothes auction, featuring items generously donated by Benedict Cumberbatch, Dame Helen Mirren, Ed Sheeran and many other famous faces. The auction created a buzz on social media, helping to raise both awareness of fuel poverty, and funds to help those affected.

Read more about our auction.

Coronavirus Information

My child's school is closing due to the coronavirus outbreak. What can I do?

The government has announced that schools will be closing for the majority of students from 20 March 2020.

Children in the following groups will still be able to go to school if their parents choose to send them:

  • The children of key workers
  • Children receiving support from social services
  • Children with disabilities
  • Children with Education Health and Care Plans (EHCPs​)
  • Young carers

If you need to take time off work to care for your children, you should check your employment rights on the ACAS website.

What if I am well but my employer tells me not to work because of the coronavirus outbreak?

This will depend on your contract and is an employment law issue. You may be able to get advice from ACAS on this. You will not be entitled to Statutory Sick Pay (SSP).

What if I have been in contact with someone with coronavirus and don’t want to go to work and risk infecting my colleagues and customers?

You will only be able to get special help under the coronavirus rules if you are self-isolating in accordance with NHS advice. You can find the current NHS coronavirus advice on the NHS website

What if I am not getting any customers in my self-employed business because of the coronavirus?

You may be able to claim Universal Credit, but you will not be entitled to any special support because of the coronavirus outbreak. You may have the minimum income floor applied to your claim, or you may be required to look for full time-employment.

I’m on a zero-hours contract, will I get paid if I’m told to self isolate?

If you are self-isolating in accordance with NHS guidance and you usually earn at least £120 per week, you should get Statutory Sick Pay even if you are on a zero hours contract.

What if I am homeless with no income so can’t self-isolate and need funds for accommodation?

The government has not published any guidance for what you should do if you are homeless and develop coronavirus symptoms. It would be best to contact your local authority for advice. You should do so by telephone if at all possible.