At Children’s Services Overview and Scrutiny Committee on Monday 1 November, Cllr Wheeler made enquiries regarding help for all families, particularly during the Christmas period.
Whilst some families do receive much needed welfare support due to their situations, some families are not eligible for this help and due to the pandemic, are now experiencing financial difficulties. Cllr Wheeler asked what is being done to identify and help families who need assistance but are above Bedford Borough Council’s ‘qualifying line’.
Chief Officer for Children’s Services, Martin Purbrick responded that schools and children in vulnerable positions provide feedback to the Council and that if any families are suffering hardship or difficulties, they need to contact the Council directly to see if they can get any additional support.
Councillor John Wheeler commented “There is a need for financial support, especially for those who have fallen on hard times during Covid-19. Whilst they may not technically qualify for support, Bedford Borough should be doing all it can to identify these people and provide them with the assistance they need until they are able to get back on their feet.
I am lucky that in Wootton we have great charities who are able to provide this support, but other Bedford Borough residents may not be as lucky.”