Coronavirus

The following is some basic information to provide you answers or signpost you for further information.

Please note this is a fast developing situation. Please check government websites for up to date information and advice.

Below information correct as of 30/03/2020.

Contents

Contacting Kalayaan

What are the symptoms of Coronavirus?

Medical information

Financial support

Employment Issues

Immigration Policy

Other useful sources of information and support

Contacting Kalayaan

Please note that we are anxious to keep Kalayaan safe for all our service users and for us to continue assisting our clients. Following government advice, we will not have any drop-in appointments at Kalayaan.

Workers and support organisations can still reach us by telephone and email:

Phone:         0207 243 2942

Email:          info@kalayaan.org.uk

Please allow us 2-3 working days to respond to your enquiry.

What are the symptoms of Coronavirus?

The following symptoms may develop in the 14 days after exposure to someone who has Coranavirus:

  • A cough
  • A high temperature
  • Shortness of breath

If you have travelled to any of the listed in the link below, please follow the advice given, to stay at home for 14 days:

https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/coronavirus-covid-19/advice-for-travellers/

Medical information

The only reliable source of medical information is the NHS website:

https://www.gov.uk/guidance/coronavirus-covid-19-information-for-the-public

This information is updated every day at 2pm.

If you suspect you have Coronavirus or have been in close contact with someone with this condition, please call NHS 111 or go to the NHS 111 Coronavirus advice website.

https://111.nhs.uk/

NHS 111 is free for everyone regardless of their status in the UK. This service can tell you if you need medical help and advise you what to do.

The government has confirmed there will be no charge made for testing and treatment of those with Coronavirus. There will also be no immigration checks to access treatment for Coronavirus:

https://www.gov.uk/guidance/nhs-entitlements-migrant-health-guide#free-for-all

Doctors of the World have provided some helpful information in different languages:

https://www.doctorsoftheworld.org.uk/news/coronavirus-information/

Overstayer / undocumented

You can access emergency medical treatment from the NHS. Treatment at the Accident and Emergency Department is always free.

Victims of TraffickingPositive Reasonable Grounds Decision, Discretionary Leave, Limited Leave to Remain after a positive Conclusive Grounds Decision.

You have full access to the NHS and can access emergency medical treatment.

Registering with a GP

Everyone, regardless of their immigration status, has the right to register with a GP.

You do not need to have an identity document or proof of address to register with a GP in the UK.

The following link sets out what information a GP surgery needs to register a new patient:

https://assets.nhs.uk/prod/documents/how-to-register-with-a-gp-asylum-seekers-and-refugees.pdf

Financial Support

No recourse to public funds attached to your leave in the UK

If you are told by a doctor to self-isolate, and are employed (working legally) and earn more than £118 per week, you can apply for Statutory Sick Pay. See below link to the Statutory Sick Pay application and also a link to an article explaining when you will become eligible for this support, if you are eligible. The criteria may be revised in light of the Coronavirus so please check the DWP website for the most up to date information.

https://www.gov.uk/statutory-sick-pay

https://www.gov.uk/government/news/sick-pay-from-day-one-for-those-affected-by-coronavirus

If you can access public funds

The Department for Work and Pensions has confirmed that people who are prevented from working because of a risk to public health are able to claim universal credit. They may also be entitled to contributory employment and support allowance, which helps with living costs for people who cannot work because of a health condition. See link below, which confirms the position, but also explains that the government policies and process will change to cope with this situation.

https://www.understandinguniversalcredit.gov.uk/coronavirus/

Subsistence support as a victim of trafficking

Kalayaan works closely with Hestia to provide support to our mutual clients who are in the National Referral Mechanism (NRM) and based in London.

Kalayaan understands that Hestia will be in touch with people individually to arrange when they will receive their subsistence. Please contact Kalayaan if you experience any issues with this.

https://www.hestia.org/news/coronavirus-a-statement-from-hestia?utm_source=Twitter&utm_medium=post&utm_campaign=COVID19

Food Banks

If you are not yet eligible for such support please note that you can approach food banks for food and sometimes, other essentials.

https://www.trusselltrust.org/get-help/find-a-foodbank/

Employment issues

If you have a workplace problem, you can call the ACAS helpline on 0300 123 1100.

ACAS is an independent public body that provides free and impartial advice to workers and their employers.

The helpline is open Monday – Friday, 8am – 6pm.

More information is available on their website:

https://www.acas.org.uk/dispute-resolution

You can also try contacting your local Citizens Advice Bureau or Law Centre for employment related advice:

https://www.citizensadvice.org.uk/about-us/contact-us/contact-us/contact-us/

Adviceline:     03444 111 444

Adviceline is open Monday – Friday, 9am – 5pm. Calls cost the same as calls to landline numbers.

Text relay:      03444 111 445

Or you can chat with an advisor online

An alphabetical list of law centres and contact details can be found on the link below:

https://www.lawcentres.org.uk/about-law-centres/law-centres-on-google-maps/alphabtically

Immigration Policy

UKVI are continuously providing updates and changes to immigration systems and procedures in light of Coronavirus.

The below is not an exhaustive list but sets out the measures most relevant to the client group Kalayaan supports.

Domestic worker visa holders

Individuals in the UK whose visa expires between 24 January 2020 and 30 May 2020 must contact the Coronavirus Immigration Team if they are unable to leave the UK due to flight or other travel restrictions.

Individuals in this category will have their visa extended until 31 May 2020.

Contact details for the Coronavirus Immigration Team and advice to follow can be found in the links below:

https://www.gov.uk/guidance/coronavirus-covid-19-advice-for-uk-visa-applicants-and-temporary-uk-residents

file:///C:/Users/User/Downloads/24-03-Covid-19-UKVI-Factsheets.-UK-Temp-Residents-and-Visa-holders.pdf

Reporting suspended

The requirement to report for those who are subject to immigration bail has been suspended:

https://www.gov.uk/immigration-reporting-centres

Sopra Steria has suspended all UKVCAS services

https://www.ukvcas.co.uk/flash-message-detail?flashmessageId=950

Asylum applicants

Screening interviews have been cancelled and substantive interviews have been paused. UKVI are looking at alternatives for conducting substantive interviews.

There will be no termination or eviction of asylum support – this will be paused for 3 months. This applies to failed asylum seekers and those granted refugee status.

Refugee Council has a full list of updates regarding the asylum process and availability of support for asylum seekers:

https://www.refugeecouncil.org.uk/latest/news/changes-to-home-office-asylum-resettlement-policy-and-practice-in-response-to-covid-19/

Other useful sources of information and support

The Voice of Domestic Workers

https://www.facebook.com/The-Voice-of-Domestic-Workers-456016897839252/

https://www.thevoiceofdomesticworkers.com/

FDWA (Filipino Domestic Workers Association)

https://www.facebook.com/fdwauk/

http://fdwa.co.uk/

Unite the Union

https://unitetheunion.org/

Right to Remain

https://righttoremain.org.uk/

Free Movement

https://www.freemovement.org.uk/coronavirus/

End.