Casework Update – December

May 12, 2014

My office was as busy as ever over the Christmas period. Below are some examples of constituents who wrote to me or attended surgeries and who I helped to solve their issues.

1. I was contacted by a constituent who was suffering from the effects of recent changes to welfare, and in particular the Bedroom Tax. To make matters worse, the roof was blown off her home during recent stormy weather. She was re-housed but had no fridge or cooker and was borrowing money for food. She was facing the first Christmas away from her home and family for over 40 years and felt like she was “going around in circles”.

I arranged for the Area Team at South Tyneside Homes to ensure she was provided with a fridge/freezer and cooker, her roof was repaired, and a Welfare Reform Officer is helping her to mitigate the effects of the Bedroom tax. This enabled her to get back into her home in time for Christmas.

2. I was contacted by a constituent who had been informed his child maintenance payments were in substantial arrears, when in fact his payments had always been in credit and in accordance with the amounts agreed. I contacted the Child Support Agency asking them to investigate this issue and within 9 working days his complaint had been resolved. The CSA confirmed that my constituent had been paying the amount agreed and wrote off his arrears.

3. A constituent wrote to me saying he was owed more than £400 in credit from a utility company, which had been mistakenly charged to him after he had cancelled his account. However, after several weeks he had still not received this sum. I immediately contacted the company and ensured that a cheque was promptly dispatched.

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