Providing advice and information on everything from benefits to housing is all part of a day’s work for the West Dunbartonshire Citizens Advice Bureau.
But since lockdown kicked in they have found themselves with a whole new set of enquiries to deal with.
“In the early days we had lots of concerns about employment rights, Universal Credit and benefits in general.
“There was a lot of information out there but some of it was quite conflicting,” said Joe McCormack CEO of WDCAB.
“The Scottish Government and UK government brought in measures to support people and since then it has been a wee bit quieter while people are coming to terms with self isolation.”
Working from home the staff are taking queries over the phone, from the WDCAB Facebook page and also by email. They are also providing information on the WDCAB website.
Joe added: “We are still dealing with general CAB enquiries on benefits, employment rights, housing, debt and consumer issues.
“We’re taking referrals from West Dunbartonshire Council’s Crisis Support line for concerns about Universal Credit and energy advice.”
With some form of social distancing looking set to continue, the WDCAB team is expecting to get more queries about cancelled holidays, wedding receptions and events.
Joe said they are also anticipating people seeking support to deal with mounting debts and job losses.
“The furlough scheme has helped reduce anxiety for many people for now
“but as that is phased out and some people may find they don’t have a job to return to we will be here to support them through changing circumstances – as we always have.”
WD Citizens Advice Bureau: 01389 752727 (Alexandria), 01389 744690 (Dumbarton), 0141 435 7590 (Clydebank) www.wdcab.co.uk
Independent Resource Centre: 0141 951 4040
WD Housing & Homeless Support: 01389 738080 or freephone 0800 197 1004 (option 5)