Hackney Coronavirus support

This is a difficult time for many people living in Hackney. However, there is support available to you. This is a quick changing situation and I will keep the below links updated. Please remember my office remains open so please email meg.hillier.mp@parliament.uk if you need any assistance. 

Government information: For all information and guidance released by the Government about Coronavirus (COVID-19), please see here; https://www.gov.uk/coronavirus

Get coronavirus support as a clinically extremely vulnerable person: https://www.gov.uk/coronavirus-extremely-vulnerable

If you need foreign language COVID-19 guidance, please see here:

·         https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/covid-19-guidance-on-social-distancing-and-for-vulnerable-people

·         https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/covid-19-stay-at-home-guidance

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

Hackney Council

If you live in Hackney and need support during this time, then please read the latest information about coronavirus and its impact on services here; https://hackney.gov.uk/coronavirus

You can also call Hackney Council’s Coronavirus helpline: 020 8356 3111 (8am-5pm Monday-Friday).

Twitter: https://twitter.com/hackneycouncil or @hackneycouncil

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/hackneycouncil/

·         For information on how you can volunteer in Hackney; https://hackney.gov.uk/coronavirus-volunteering

·         For information on how Hackney Council is supporting vulnerable and affected families; https://hackney.gov.uk/coronavirus-support

·         For information on how Hackney Council is supporting local businesses; https://hackney.gov.uk/support-for-business

·         Please view the Hackney Council local support services map of organisations that are providing an online or phone alternative to their usual activities in response to Coronavirus (COVID-19); https://hackney.gov.uk/find-support-services

·         See Hackney Council’s Local Officer website for other services and organisations; https://www.hackneylocaloffer.co.uk/kb5/hackney/localoffer/home.page

·         You can find and contact your locally elected Councillors; https://hackney.gov.uk/elected-representatives2

Hackney COVID-19 Mutual Aid

This is a group for Hackney residents looking to help each other out during the COVID-19 pandemic. Members of the Hackney COVID-19 Mutual Aid are volunteering to help vulnerable people with food deliveries, dog-walking and other helpful local advice and support.

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/groups/280285692955390/  or search ‘Hackney Covid 19 Mutual Aid’ on Facebook.

To find your local support group, please see here:


Please note, that the most current information about the local groups can be found on the Hackney COVID-19 Facebook page. 

Health and well-being


For reliable and useful information about Coronavirus please visit the NHS websites; 

·         https://111.nhs.uk/covid-19

·         https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/coronavirus-covid-19/

Age UK East London

·         Age UK East London is a local independent charity working with older people mainly in the boroughs of Hackney, Newham and Tower Hamlets.  For information on the charity is responding to Coronavirus in Hackney and how to volunteer, please visit their website here; https://www.ageuk.org.uk/eastlondon/

·         Further information and advice can be found on the national website; https://www.ageuk.org.uk/information-advice/coronavirus/coronavirus/

Mind in the City

·         Part of the Mind charity network, Mind in the City is an independent mental health charity providing support for local people in Hackney and Waltham Forest.

·         Please find Coronavirus support and information on their website; https://www.mindchwf.org.uk/coronavirus-support-and-information/

·         National website; https://www.mind.org.uk/coronavirus-we-are-here-for-you/  

Housing Support

·         Shelter is a national charity that supports people struggling with housing situations or homelessness through advice, support and legal services. Visit Shelter’s coronavirus and housing information page for advice on your rights and the latest legislation; https://england.shelter.org.uk/housing_advice/coronavirus

·         Homeless Link https://www.homeless.org.uk/covid19-homelessness

·         Thames Reach https://thamesreach.org.uk/covid-19-updates/

·         St Mungo’s https://www.mungos.org/homelessness/how-to-help-during-coronavirus/

·         HomeOwners Alliance https://hoa.org.uk/2020/03/buying-home-coronavirus/

·         Leasehold Advisory Service https://www.lease-advice.org/

Finance support

The below links provide helpful advice on the available support for people who have been financially affected by the COVID-19 outbreak.

·         National Debtline https://www.nationaldebtline.org/

·         Money Advice Service https://www.moneyadviceservice.org.uk/

·         Step Change https://www.stepchange.org/debt-info/debt-and-coronavirus.aspx

·         Money Saving Expert https://www.moneysavingexpert.com/

·         Entitledto https://www.entitledto.co.uk/help/Coronavirus_help

·         Turn2us https://www.turn2us.org.uk/get-support/Benefits-and-Coronavirus-new 

Employment advice

Advisory, Conciliation and Arbitration Service (ACAS) provides free and impartial advice on employment rights, resolving workplace conflict and best practice and policies. Please see here their Coronavirus advice for employers and employees https://www.acas.org.uk/coronavirus 

Hackney Jobcentre Plus

Jobcentre Plus is the part of the Department for Work and Pensions and delivers support services that help people claim working age benefits. Hackney Mare Street Jobcentre and Hoxton Jobcentre are closed following Government guidance.

During the COVID-19 crisis, advisors are providing support and advice by email and telephone, Monday to Friday between 9:00 am – 5:00 pm. Please note that they are currently experiencing a high volume of calls.

Please find further information and their contact details here; https://www.hackneylocaloffer.co.uk/kb5/hackney/localoffer/service.page?id=QBlRBXOFXns

For further information on welfare benefits and support from the Government, please visit the Department for Work and Pensions website; https://www.gov.uk/government/organisations/department-for-work-pensions

The Government has also set up this useful page about Universal Credit https://www.understandinguniversalcredit.gov.uk/coronavirus/ 

Hackney Citizens Advice Bureau

Citizens Advice East End is part of a wider network of Citizens Advice Bureau organisations that provide free, confidential and impartial advice for people in Hackney, Newham and Tower Hamlets on the big issues affecting people’s lives.

They have stopped giving face-to-face advice. You can get advice by;

Phone: 020 3855 4472, (Mon to Fri 10am to 12 noon and 2pm to 4pm)

Text ‘Help’ to 07860041410

Email: advice@eastendcab.org.uk

Main website; http://www.eastendcab.org.uk/hackney/

Twitter: https://twitter.com/eastend_cab or @EastEnd_CAB

Please visit the national Citizens Advice Bureau website for Coronavirus related advice and information on finance, housing, employment, health and crime matters; https://www.citizensadvice.org.uk/coronavirus/

Hackney Community Law Centre

Hackney Community Law Centre is a charity employing solicitors and paralegals to provides free and independent legal advice and representation to people living, working or studying in the London Borough of Hackney and neighbouring boroughs.

Due to COVID-19 the law centre is closed to the public. Existing clients should email their advisors directly. New clients can receive employment, housing, welfare benefits, asylum and immigration advice between 11:00 am – 1:00 pm on weekdays. Please visit their website for contact details and further information; https://hclc.org.uk/

Twitter: https://twitter.com/HackneyLawCentr or @HackneyLawCentr

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/HackneyLawCentre/

Hackney Food Banks

Hackney foodbank provides emergency food and support to local people in a crisis. They are part of the Trussel Trust's UK-wide foodbank network.

Website; https://hackney.foodbank.org.uk/

Twitter: @Hackneyfoodbank or https://twitter.com/HackneyFoodbank

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/HackneyFoodbank/ 

Small businesses

If you run a small business in Hackney then please regularly check the Government’s coronavirus business support website, which is the best source for the most up-to-date information on support packages.

Hackney Council are also supporting Hackney businesses during this public health emergency with a £100million financial support and relief package. Some of these measures include a three-month rent-free period for the Council’s voluntary and charity tenants and rent deferrals for other commercial tenants.

Please visit Hackney Council’s useful online business support hub here: https://hackney.gov.uk/support-for-business  

Sign up for their Business Network email newsletter here: https://public.govdelivery.com/accounts/UKHACKNEYCOUNCIL/subscriber/new

Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme (CJRS)

The Government has introduced the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme to support businesses keeping staff on their payroll. This scheme will allow HMRC to reimburse 80 per cent of your staffs’ wages, up to a cap of £2,500 per worker per month. You can find further details here

Coronavirus Business Interruption Loan Scheme (CBILS)

The Government has also introduced the Coronavirus Business Interruption Loan Scheme. This scheme is open to all UK-based businesses that have an annual turnover or no more than £45 million. Further information can be found via the British Business Bank here


Bounce-back Loan Scheme

The Government has now announced the 'bounce-back loan scheme', which is an improvement on the Coronavirus Business Interruption Loan scheme (CBIL). Under the new scheme the Government guarantees 100 per cent of the loan and there won’t be any fees or interest to pay for the first 12 months. The scheme is open and you can find further details here.


Business rates relief

If you run a business in the retail, leisure, or hospitality industry, you will not have to pay business rates for the 2020-21 tax year. See further details here.

Small business grants

The Government are providing eligible small businesses with a one-off £10,000 grant. Eligibility conditions apply so please check the Government’s website for further details.

Future Fund

Hackney South and Shoreditch is a hub for start-up businesses, especially in the tech sector. Many start-ups are, by definition, either pre-revenue, loss-making and/or stuck between funding-rounds. They were therefore locked out of any Government support through the Coronavirus Business Interruption Loan scheme. I teamed up with the Coalition for a Digital Economy, to press the Government on this issue. I am pleased to see that the Government has now introduced the 'Future Fund', a scheme tailored specifically for start-ups. This is a £1.25 billion fund that will include joint investments with venture capital firms and grants for research and development. See here for further details. 


Other useful links