Welcoming the launch of a helpline for people who are isolated, digitally excluded and without support during the COVID-19 pandemic, Lib Dem councillor for Kingswells, Sheddocksley & Summerhill, Steve Delaney said
The following information was issued on behalf of the Scottish Government and COSLA. It is intended to reach people who are isolating and do not have access to the internet.
Only too often we forget about the digitally excluded. This support line offers a vital safety net for those who cannot access online services. Please pass this information to anyone you know who falls into this category. Thank you.
A new national helpline has been set up to provide essential assistance to those who don’t have a network of support but who are at high risk if they contract Coronavirus (COVID-19).
Scottish Government and Local Government have been working with Local Resilience Partnerships across Scotland to set up and launch a coronavirus helpline for people at high risk with an urgent need for support. It has launched today (Tuesday 14th April). This support will be delivered by a range of local groups, including councils, the third sector and volunteers.
The service will offer help to those who do not have family or existing community support and cannot get online and who are over 70, disabled people, require the support of mental health services, are pregnant or receive a flu jab for health reasons. This service is in addition to localised support already available for people who have received letters advising them to shield themselves. However, any of those in the shielding category who are not yet receiving assistance, who do not have family and cannot get online can access support via this new helpline.
We know that constituents may be in touch with you for help at this time and would ask you to direct appropriate cases to this helpline. The helpline (number below) will initially operate during core working hours of 09:00 to 17:00 Monday to Friday while plans are developed and implemented to extend it to operate for a longer period each day.
Coronavirus free helpline: 0800 111 4000
Callers will be automatically connected to their local authority who will support them to access the service they need, such as:
- essential food and medication
- links to local social work services for vulnerable children or adults
- emotional support
- contact with local volunteer groups.
Please remember this helpline is dedicated to helping those who cannot leave their home and who cannot get help online.