£3.4m success for welfare team

Published Date: 

18 May 2017 - 11:20

THE welfare rights team at Argyll and Bute Council has helped local residents claim more than £3 million in benefits.

The total of £3,439,468 is a record-breaking sum for the team.

It’s also up nearly £1 million on the previous year.

Staff dealt with almost 1,950 cases over the 12 months to the end of March.

The council’s team helps people know what they are entitled to claim.

They assist with the applications and, if a claim is unsuccessful, can help with an appeal depending on circumstances.

Benefits they assist with include attendance allowance, which helps older people live independently in the community.

They have also worked with residents to apply for the new personal independence payment (PIP), which is replacing disability living allowance.

Employment support allowance claims were also supported by the team, as were universal credit enquiries.

Donald MacVicar, head of community and culture, said: “This is a very valuable service the council offers to our residents.

“People don’t always realise exactly what they are entitled to.

“Others may be applying for the first time and are unsure of how to go about it.

“In the event of a claim being turned down, the team can work with the claimant on an appeal, assisting them through the process.

“The fact the council has been able to help Argyll and Bute residents in need get £3,439,468 over the course of 12 months is very welcome and is substantially more than in previous years.

“The welfare rights team works extremely hard to help residents in need. As these figures show, they are making a crucial difference in the lives of many people.

“Anyone who needs our help, please get in touch. Full details are on the council website.”

The council can also help with council tax issues, housing benefit, free school meals, clothing grants and education maintenance allowance.

For more information, see https://www.argyll-bute.gov.uk/social-care-and-health/welfare-rights