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Thursday, December 10, 2020

Parents and carers of self-isolating children eligible for £500

Parents and carers on low incomes with children who are self-isolating will be eligible for a £500 support payment.

The Self-Isolation Support Scheme was launched last month to provide financial support to people on low incomes or facing financial hardship when they were asked to self-isolate by the NHS Wales Test Trace Protect service.

It will now be extended to help parents and carers who have to take time off work to look after their children when they have to self-isolate because of a coronavirus outbreak in their school or childcare setting.

First Minister Mark Drakeford said: “Working from home is not an option for everyone so when a child has to self-isolate, this can be a stressful period for parents and carers.

“A significant number of people are losing income because they are unable to work while looking after children who cannot go to school or their normal childcare setting because of coronavirus. 

“Extending this scheme will help ease the financial hardship some parents and are facing, helping them care for their children.”

The Self-Isolation Support Scheme will be extended to parents and carers on low incomes who meet the criteria for the main scheme. To qualify, they must have a child attending a school or childcare setting up to and including in year eight – or up to age 25 if the learner has multiple and complex additional needs – and who has received a formal notification to self-isolate from Test Trace Protect or their education or childcare setting.

Minister for Housing and Local Government Julie James said: “We are committed to doing everything we can to support people and protect people’s health and wellbeing.

“The £500 self-isolation payment will help us give people the financial security they need to stay-at-home and break the cycle of transmission. As well as support the wider efforts of schools and other services to control the spread of the virus

“Local authorities have been working hard throughout the pandemic to support their communities and I thank them for their hard work. I will continue to keep the scheme under review to ensure that those most in need receive the support they need to self-isolate and reduce transmission.”

Parents or carers who are not on benefits but meet the other criteria and are at risk of financial hardship can apply to the scheme under the discretionary element to support.

People will be able to apply for the self-isolation payment via their local authority website from 14 December and payments will be backdated to 23 October.

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