Since lockdown, we have experienced an even higher demand in the number of people seeking our help; calls to our helpline have increased by 105%. People are worried about their jobs, protecting their families and losing their safe place of refuge – their home. Wales is facing unemployment levels that have not been seen for decades, putting even more households under financial strain. Our community-based face-to-face support services throughout Wales have closed by necessity. All frontline staff are now working remotely, offering independent, expert housing and legal advice/ support by phone, skype, email, webchat and online. Whilst we already provide advice on all areas of housing law, we have quickly developed essential additional advice and resources for those specifically affected by coronavirus, including information, advice, advocacy and legal representation.
As lockdown measures are lifted, we will continue to be a critical lifeline; not only for individuals but also for smaller, grassroots organisations who rely on our knowledge and independent, expert advice as a specialist resource for people facing homelessness. We will continue to ensure that people can access clear, concise information and practical advice from our frontline staff on various topics, including tenancy deposits, private renting, disrepair, homelessness, benefits, council housing, and housing issues specifically relating to Covid-19.