During the coronavirus outbreak, there are a number of organisations who are helping to provide support and supplies to those who are social distancing or are in self-isolation.

Council Support & Services

Essex County Council have set up an online coronavirus hub on their website, where you can find the latest information. This includes changes to their services.

Emergency Grants for Charitable Groups

Essex Community Foundation is an independent charitable trust improving the quality of life of people in our community by investing and distributing funds on behalf of a wide range of donors. It has created the Essex Coronavirus Response and Recovery Programme to get help quickly to voluntary and community organisations in Essex, Southend and Thurrock that are in crisis as a result of the pandemic and need emergency funding to keep their vital services running. Initially grants of up to £15,000 will be available. Priority will be given to those delivering vital services to older and vulnerable people, organisations helping to relieve pressure on public services and those co-ordinating a local community response.
Find out how to apply here: www.essexcommunityfoundation.org.uk/grants/grants

Information for Individuals - Find your Local Group

The Essex Map is a free tool designed to bring our communities closer together by helping you to find the services, groups, and activities available in your area. It was created by The Essex Alliance to promote the work of organisations and individuals who work hard to make our communities better, rather than those who focus on making a profit. www.essexmap.co.uk

Readiness in Essex

The Essex Resilience Forum is a partnership of the organisations who respond to emergencies. It aims to make sure that if a large scale emergency does affect us, we are ready to respond and working together to minimise any impact.Their website provides information which will enable you to prepare yourself, your family, your community or your business to cope with an emergency.

Latest Briefing Notes from ERF: week commencing 22.06.2020 >

Safety & Policing

The Essex Police website provides advice and information about the Coronavirus (Covid-19) and the measures the police are taking to keep the public safe.

The Essex Police, Fire & Crime Commissioner is the voice of the people, holding Essex Police to account and providing an efficient and effective Fire and Rescue Service. www.essex.pfcc.police.uk

Support for Businesses

The Government is supporting businesses and their employees through a package of measures during this period of unprecedented disruption.

The Government’s Business Support website outlines the full range of business
support measures that have been made available to UK businesses and employees.
It includes details on:
Coronavirus Business Interruption Loan Scheme which will help businesses affected to access bank lending and overdrafts if they need to. For loans up to £5 million, the Government is providing a guarantee for each loan. https://www.businesssupport.gov.uk/coronavirus-business-interruption-loanscheme/.
Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme where all UK employers with a PAYE scheme will be able to access support to continue paying part of their employees’ salary for those who would otherwise have been laid off during this crisis. https://www.businesssupport.gov.uk/coronavirus-job-retentionscheme/
Business Rates Holiday for Retail, Hospitality and Leisure sectors in England for the 2020-21 tax year. https://www.businesssupport.gov.uk/business-rates-holiday-for-retail-hospitality-and-leisure/
Up to £25,000 per property Cash Grant for Retail, Hospitality and Leisure in
England. https://www.businesssupport.gov.uk/cash-grant-for-retail-hospitality-and-leisure/
Small Business Grant Funding for small businesses in England that already pay little or no business rates because of small business rate relief, rural rate relief and tapered
relief. https://www.businesssupport.gov.uk/small-business-grant-funding/
Statutory Sick Pay Rebate to allow small and medium-sized businesses to reclaim Statutory Sick Pay paid for staff absence due to coronavirus. https://www.businesssupport.gov.uk/statutory-sick-payrebate/
Time to Pay – all businesses and self-employed people in financial distress, and with outstanding tax liabilities, may be eligible to receive support with their tax affairs through HMRC’s Time to Pay Service. https://www.gov.uk/government/collections/financial-support-for-businesses-duringcoronavirus-covid-19#paying-tax
Covid-19 Corporate Financing Facility where the Bank of England will buy short-term debt from larger companies. https://www.businesssupport.gov.uk/covid-19-corporate-financing-facility/
VAT Deferral for 3 months for businesses. https://www.businesssupport.gov.uk/vat-deferral/
Income Tax Deferral for the Self-Employed under the Self-Assessment System until January 2021. https://www.gov.uk/government/collections/financial-support-for-businesses-duringcoronavirus-covid-19#paying-tax
Frequently Asked Questions: https://www.businesssupport.gov.uk/faqs/
Further advice for businesses and employees in Scotland, Wales, and Northern Ireland.

More information on the Coronavirus Business Interruption Loan Scheme
This scheme, which was originally announced by the Chancellor at Budget, has now opened. It is being run by the British Business Bank and over 40 accredited lenders, who can provide lending of up to £5m for smaller businesses across the UK who are experiencing lost or deferred revenues, leading to disruptions to their cashflow. It will support the continued provision of finance to SMEs during the COVID-19 outbreak.
Information for SMEs and business advisors can be found at https://www.british-business-bank.co.uk/ourpartners/coronavirus-businessinterruption-loan-scheme-cbils/for-businesses-and-advisors/.
Information for accredited lenders or prospective lenders can be found at https://www.british-business-bank.co.uk/ourpartners/coronavirus-business-interruptionloan-scheme-cbils/our-partners/.

Staying at Home and Away from Others

The Government introduced three new measures (effective immediately) to reduce our day-to-day contact with other people to reduce the spread of the infection:
1. Requiring people to stay at home, except for very limited purposes
2. Closing non-essential shops and community spaces
3. Stopping all gatherings of more than two people in public

Please see the Government’s https://www.gov.uk/coronavirus for the latest advice and guidance on what you need to do.

Keeping Children at Home

The Department for Education are asking people to keep children at home if at all possible. https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/coronavirus-covid-19-maintaining-educationalprovision/guidance-for-schools-colleges-and-local-authorities-on-maintaining-educational-provision.
Critical workers can still send their children to school and childcare providers if necessary, but to avoid undue pressure on the childcare spaces that are available the message is even if you are a key worker you should try to keep children at home if it is safe to do so e.g. if a partner can look after them.

Please see the Government’s https://www.gov.uk/coronavirus for the latest advice and guidance on what you need to do.