03 May 2022
Deputy Judy Martin
The Minister for Social Security has announced that a temporary payment scheme is now up and running, and payments for April have been sent to low income and 'just about managing' households. This follows her announcement at the end of March.
The scheme runs from April to December 2022 and provides £20 per person, per month - £80 per month for a household of 2 adults and 2 children. More than 11,000 islanders are receiving this additional financial support. These include 9,600 adults and children living in Income Support households and an additional 1,800 'just about managing' people who don't qualify for Income Support but receive benefits to help with heating, health or other costs.
The scheme is called the Cost of Living Temporary Scheme (COLTS) and is administered by the Customer and Local Services Team (CLS). The success of the CLS Back to Work teams has led to a record low level of unemployment which has freed up the budget this year to pay for the temporary scheme.
The project is estimated to cost £2million over the course of the next 9 months.
The COLTS payments for April were made last week. Payments from May onwards will be processed (and made) during the first week of the month.
Minister for Social Security, Deputy Judy Martin, said: "It has already been agreed that there will be an increase in Income Support Components of 2.6% in October but in addition to that, I have acted quickly to develop and implement COLTS, a new support scheme for those who most need help today.
"I believe this scheme will make a real difference, now, to low income and 'just about managing' families who are struggling with the cost of their weekly shop. I also realise that inflation pressures will be with us for a while and affect everyone.
"Ministers have already instructed officers to investigate other ways for the Government to support local islanders. These plans will go to the new Council of Ministers immediately after the election."