Coronavirus update for NRPF services 

13 March 2020

How to assist people receiving social services' support and information about our services
 
With the number of diagnosed cases of coronavirus (Covid-19) increasing the UK, councils​ will need to take steps to protect vulnerable residents with no recourse to public funds (NRPF) who are being provided with social services' support. We provide information about this here and also set out our current position regarding our training courses and the NRPF Connect database.
 
Assisting people who are receiving social services' support
It will be up to each council to take steps to ensure that people receiving social services' support can continue to receive their financial support and any other practical assistance if staff are required to self-isolate or work from home. Measures may also need to be undertaken to ensure that the wellbeing of people receiving support is monitored more regularly than usual. 

The Government has published guidance for adult social care providers of residential care, supported living and home care.
 
Some steps that councils may take to assist people with NRPF who are receiving accommodation and finanical support are outlined below:
 
  • Maintain regular telephone or email contact with a person who has been diagnosed with coronavirus or is required to self-isolate.
  • Provide reassurance and help a person to understand and follow any advice given to them by medical professionals and/or their housing provider.
  • Ensure that the service has an accurate record of elderly people and people with complex medical conditions who may be more seriously affected if they contract coronavirus; maintain regular contact to monitor their wellbeing.
  • Provide information to people about how they can reduce risks and keep updated about school closures etc.
  • Provide information to people who are working about their rights to statutory sick pay if they are required to self-isolate or are unable to work due to contracting the virus. 
  • Make arrangements for subsistence payments to continue if staff are required to self-isolate or work from home, for example, by using pre-paid cash cards or extending payment periods.
  • Ensure that each person's contact details are up to date and that people receiving support are provided with contact details for their social worker/ caseworker and their housing provider.
  • Advise people to inform their social worker/ caseworker and legal representative if they have any problems attending Home Office appointments. 
Although the Government has taken steps to prevent people who are unable to work due to coronavirus from losing an income, not all of these measures will be available to a person who has leave to remain with the NRPF condition. For example, a person who is self-employed will not be able to claim Universal Credit if they have leave to remain with NRPF. This could leave people at risk of destitution​ and in a situation where following NHS guidance on self-isolation presents serious challenges. Councils are requested to contact us if they receive requests for social services' support from people with NRPF whose ability to support themselves through employment has been affected by coronavirus.
 
Training courses
At present, all advertised open access training events are scheduled to go ahead. However, we will be monitoring the situation and if this position changes we will contact delegates to inform them as soon as possible. If an event is cancelled we will provide an opportunity to join another event later in the year. We request that delegates follow current NHS guidance on coronavirus with regards to their own attendance and we will temporarily suspend our cancellation policy by not charging people who need to cancel their place at short notice due to​ issues relating to coronavirus. 

We have contacted organisations that have commissioned training events in the forthcoming weeks and we will work with councils to ensure appropriate steps are taken to keep staff attending our courses safe.
 
NRPF Connect
Measures have been taken to ensure that the database will remain operational if NRPF Network, Home Office or Locta staff are required to self-isolate or work from home. 
 
Please contact us​ if you have any further queries about the information above.