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COVID19 Coronavirus update
This page gives customers information about how we’re managing our services at Thirteen as we respond to COVID-19 – also known as Coronavirus.
As you will have heard in the news, with the government easing social distancing restrictions, the responsibility is now on businesses to manage risks and adopt their own working practices that ensure the safety of colleagues and customers.
Throughout the pandemic, we have taken a ‘safety-first’ approach to manage risks to colleagues, customers and the organisation, while also ensuring we can continue to deliver our services to customers.
With case numbers continuing to rise across Teesside, the North East and Yorkshire, we have decided to temporarily revert to emergency internal and routine external repairs only for at least four weeks.
Any non-urgent repairs and appointments that are booked with us will be cancelled with customers and rearranged as soon as we can. We apologise for any inconvenience this may cause.
We know this will be disappointing, but with some colleagues already isolating and cases predicted to rise, we’ve taken this decision with customer and colleague safety in mind. We’re also seeing more customers needing to self-isolate, which is creating difficulties for us in accessing homes to complete repairs.
By acting now, it will ensure we can continue to deliver our most vital services in the weeks and months ahead when case numbers are predicted to rise. Read more here.
To find out more information on the advice, visit here.
We’re continuing to monitor the situation and we’ll update this page with any changes in our services.
We know that COVID-19 is making this a difficult time for everyone but you can still rent a home from us and we’re still here to help and support customers.
We’re continuing to monitor the updates on COVID-19 from the government and the NHS, and following advice from Public Health England.
If you contact us, please don’t be concerned if we ask you whether anyone in your home is self-isolating due to COVID-19.
If you’re self-isolating or you’ve been diagnosed and haven’t been in touch with us, please let us know immediately by contacting us.
This is just so we can work with you to help protect everyone as much as possible and help prevent the spread of the virus.
Support if you're shielding
People who are extremely vulnerable should have received a letter from the government advising you to register on a website to get extra support. You can register on the government's website.
If you're over 18 and the primary carer of someone who is clinically vulnerable and haven’t already received your vaccination or a letter inviting you to book your jab, you can now use the national booking service at www.nhs.uk/covid-vaccination or call 119.
For the latest on all of our services, please have a look at the frequently asked questions section on this page.
You can bid for and view a property, but we’re going to be doing things a bit differently to help keep our customers and colleagues safe. For the time being, we’ll be carrying out unaccompanied viewings on homes - you can find out more in a special video update.
We understand that you might be worried about what the COVID-19 virus outbreak means for your income, home and your ability to pay your bills.
Customers still need to continue paying their rent, but if you’re struggling we have a range of help available for you.
People won’t lose their home during this unprecedented period, so while we still need to charge rent, during this time we won’t evict anybody whose ability to pay is affected by the COVID-19 virus.
If your circumstances haven’t changed, please just carry on paying your rent as normal.
But if you’re struggling, please let us know as soon as possible. Our money advice team will help you with an alternative agreement about paying your rent.
The sooner we know, the sooner we can find a solution for you, so if you need help please contact:
- email: firstname.lastname@example.org
- tel: 0300 111 1000 (Mon to Fri, 8am – 5pm)
- find out about help available with the rent
To ensure we protect our customers and colleagues as much as possible, we’ve had to take the decision to close our offices and customer service points. Our Touchpoint store in Stockton is also closed but we are offering virtual appointments which can be made by calling 0300 111 1000.
But we’re still delivering services and there are plenty of other ways for you to get in touch with us:
- Our contact team is on-hand to deal with your queries from 8am to 7pm, Monday to Friday, so please just give us a call on 0300 111 1000.
- Use the website to access a range of information: www.thirteengroup.co.uk
- Use the self-service website to carry out tasks such as paying rent: www.thirteengroup.co.uk/SelfService
- Email us at: email@example.com
- Use Facebook to contact us: https://www.facebook.com/ThirteenGroup
Our out-of-hours team will also be available between 7pm and 8am for you to report emergency repairs and alarm calls only on 0300 111 1000.
Information for customers in high-rise buildings
Frequently asked questions
We’ve come up with a list of frequently asked questions about COVID-19, so please read them carefully.
The main thing you can do to take care and protect yourself and others is by making sure you follow the government guidance on hygiene.
This includes washing your hands properly with soap and water, immediately throwing away used tissues and taking extra care when you cough or sneeze. You can find the NHS guidance below:
Keeping well during Covid-19
You can find advice for:
- mental wellbeing while at home
- mental health advice from MIND
- wellbeing and mental health during Covid-19.pdf
- help for young people on the Young Minds website or the Unicef site
- help for older people to keep active at home.pdf
Beware of scams
There are a number of online scams around Covid that you should also be aware of.
People have received messages demanding they pay fines for breaking lockdown rules. Scammers have also tried to get people’s bank account details by offering to make goodwill payments from the HMRC. Another scam encourages people to apply for a Covid vaccine then asks you to click on a link or provide information such as your name, credit card or bank details.
Please take extra care if you're asked to provide personal or financial information.
Support in your community
Help for Hartlepool residents
You can find help available for people living in the Hartlepool Council area.
You can find details of the test sites in Hartlepool where people without symptoms can go.
You can also find:
Help for Middlesbrough residents
You can find details of the test sites in Middlesbrough where people without symptoms can go.
You can also find information about:
- organisations that could offer help in Middlesbrough.pdf
- help for people over 50 to tackle loneliness and isolation
- laptop scheme to support home learning
- Middlesbrough advice and community help
- benefits advice from the welfare rights advice line
- details about the Covid winter grant
Help for Stockton residents
You can find help available for people living in the Stockton Council area.
You can find details of the test sites in Stockton where people without symptoms can go.
You can also find:
Help for Sunderland residents
People living in Sunderland can find support by visiting Sunderland City Council's website.
You can also find:
Help for County Durham residents
People in County Durham can get help from Durham County Council website.
Help for North Yorkshire residents
People in North Yorkshire can get help from North Yorkshire County Council website.
Help for Darlington residents
People living in Darlington can get help from the Darlington Borough Council website.
Help for Newcastle residents
People in Newcastle can get help from the Newcastle City Council website.
Help for Northumberland residents
People living in Northumberland can get help from Northumberland County Council website.
Guidance on how the UK is affected by COVID-19 is updated daily and is the best source of reliable information.
- Government guidance on the the restrictions
- Symptoms of COVID-19 and how to avoid it on the NHS website
- Use the 111 online COVID-19 service if you feel you need medical help
Stay safe and keep an eye on this webpage for more updates.