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Low income helplines - Devon County Council Style (Read 17,302 times)
Dave
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Low income helplines - Devon County Council Style
Feb 24th, 2008 at 5:27pm
 
Source: Exmouth Herald

http://www.exmouthherald.co.uk/exmouthherald/news/story.aspx?brand=EXHOnline&cat...

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Low income help lines
devon.editorial@archant.co.uk
22 February 2008

Devon County Council has pledged to do all it can to reduce the impact of rising household bills for people on low incomes and to promote the take-up of benefits to which many Devon households may be entitled.

The commitment from the council is given having this week agreed to limit Council Tax to a 3.9 per cent rise to help fund key services across the county, such as care for the elderly, schools and road maintenance.

The rise is less than this year's national average and has fallen for the third consecutive year.

Support for people on low incomes is to be made an even greater priority for the council, which six years ago established Care Direct, the telephone advice line to help pensioners out of poverty by helping them get access to benefits.

At the same time, the county council is continuing to support Devon Pound, a countywide initiative helping people who are excluded from mainstream banking because of poor credit histories. Devon Pound is part of South West Pound, a Not-For-Profit company.

Devon Pound clients receive a comprehensive budgeting check and guidance on where to go for further services, resulting in a massive £6,000 saving per month for their clients with Credit Unions.

For free advice about Attendance Allowance, Disability Living Allowance, Carers Allowance, Pension Credit, contact Devon County Council's Care Direct on 0845 155 1007.

For more information about Devon Pound, contact 0800 316 9296.


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Re: Low income helplines - Devon County Council St
Reply #1 - Feb 25th, 2008 at 3:27am
 
Source: Devon County Council

http://www.devon.gov.uk/press_entitlement_take_up_council_tax_benefit

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Devon County Council does more to help people on low incomes

From Mike Bomford, Exeter 382173, February 15, 2008

Devon County Council has pledged to do all it can to reduce the impact of rising household bills for people on low incomes and to promote the take-up of benefits to which many Devon households may be entitled to.

The commitment from the Council is given having this week agreed to limit Council Tax to a 3.9% rise to help fund key services across the county such as care for the elderly, schools and road maintenance. The rise is less than this year's national average and has fallen for the third consecutive year.

Support for people on low incomes is to be made an even greater priority for the Council, who established Care Direct, the telephone advice line to help pensioners out of poverty by helping them get access to benefits, six years ago.

Since then the service has boosted people's incomes by a massive £15.7 million through taking up entitlements including Attendance Allowance, Disability Living Allowance, Carers Allowance, and Pension Credit.

Care Direct has become one of the central blocks of the Council's nationally acclaimed My Devon customer service centre, and is now also the main route in to social care services in Devon.

At the same time, the County Council is continuing to support Devon Pound, a countywide initiative helping people who are excluded from mainstream banking because of poor credit histories. Devon Pound is part of South West Pound, a Not-For-Profit company.

The County Council helped set up Devon Pound and according to the Government's Department of Work and Pensions, it is now one of the country's most successful community banking partnerships.

Since starting in November 2006, Devon Pound has helped over 1,700 people and enable 650 people to save interest payments of at least £289,502 on loans they might otherwise have taken from doorstep lenders.

Devon Pound clients receive a comprehensive budgeting check and guidance on where to go for further services, resulting in a massive £6,000 saving per month for their clients with Credit Unions.

9,435 households in Devon have incomes of £10,200 or less, which is way below the national average, and for many, exclusion from mainstream banking can lead to doorstep lending at phenomenal interest rates that compound their debts further.

Cllr Des Hannon, Devon County Council's Executive Member for Corporate Performance, said:

"Rising fuel and utility costs, taxes and other household bills all hit people in the pocket.  And it's people on lower incomes who suffer most.

"Our frontline services offer vital help to the most vulnerable people in Devon, especially pensioners and young families.

"Each year though millions of pounds of much-needed benefits are left unclaimed.  The County Council will redouble its efforts to help people get what they are entitled to by right.

"A quick phone call to our Care Direct service can make a huge difference to older people's lives by getting them the benefits they deserve.

"Our campaign with the Devon Welfare Rights Unit is also helping families caring for children with special needs to claim approximately £1.75 million in additional benefits.

"The credit crunch has made it more difficult to borrow from conventional lenders, which is a risk for people on low incomes and with poor credit histories.   For people excluded from mainstream banking, our message is try your local Credit Union. Don't get trapped by high interest doorstep lending."

For free advice about Attendance Allowance, Disability Living Allowance, Carers Allowance, Pension Credit, contact Devon County Council's Care Direct 0845 155 1007.

For more information about Devon Pound, contact 0800 316 9296.

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Note that Devon County Council is firmly on the 0845 bandwagon.
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« Last Edit: Feb 25th, 2008 at 3:32am by Dave »  
 
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Devon County Council Use of 0845 Rip-Off Numbers
Reply #2 - Jun 6th, 2010 at 8:24pm
 
Source: Tavistock People

http://www.tavistockpeople.co.uk/news/Devon-County-Council-Use-0845-Rip-Numbers/...

Quote:
Devon County Council Use of 0845 Rip-Off Numbers

By  pobox112 | Sunday, April 25, 2010, 12:30

Devon Country Council should be ashamed of themselves with their proliferation of revenue 0845 producing telephone numbers.

There are people who are not able to afford a fixed telephone line or may not be with a telecom operator that is giving some relief from the costs of making these calls.  Not that the foregoing basic call times are when Devon Council are open.

People are without a line for many reasons, it is just not cost. They may be in rented accommodation with a minimum 6 month rental tenure.  This is the normal set tenure unless agreed prior to taking that tenure on.

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« Last Edit: Jun 6th, 2010 at 10:35pm by Dave »  
 
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Re: Low income helplines - Devon County Council St
Reply #3 - Jul 1st, 2010 at 1:56pm
 
FOI response gives the alternatives for DCC's 0845 numbers:

http://www.newtonabbotpeople.co.uk/news/Devon-County-County-FOI-Request-0845-Rel...

0845 155 1001   01884 232281  Libraries  
0845 155 1002   01884 232282  Registrars  
0845 155 1003   01884 232283  Fax
0845 155 1004   01884 232284  Roads & Transport
0845 155 1005   01884 232285  Disability Information Service
0845 155 1007   01884 232287  Care Direct
0845 155 1010   01884 232290  Recycling and Waste
0845 155 1013   01884 232293  Children & Families  
0845 155 1014   01884 232294  Adult & Community Learning
0845 155 1015   01884 232295  General Enquiries
0845 155 1019   01884 232299  Schools and Education
0845 155 1020   01884 232280  Textphone
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Devon County Council . ( Low Call Rate ).
Reply #4 - Dec 29th, 2012 at 4:59am
 
I see DCC still claim that 0845 is a Low Call Rate.  Huh


"Emergency Duty Service


•Tel. 0845 6000 388 (low-call rate)"



http://www.devon.gov.uk/index/socialcare/contacting-social-services/how-to-conta...

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« Last Edit: Dec 29th, 2012 at 5:01am by bigjohn »  

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Devon County Council Use Of 0345
Reply #5 - Jan 12th, 2014 at 2:26am
 
Devon County Council are promoting some 0345 numbers
see http://www.devon.gov.uk/contact_us

The main general enquries  number  0845 155 1015 also works if you call the 0345 alternative 0345 155 1015,and i would guess so would the others.Presumeably they intend to switch to 0345 completely in due course.
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« Last Edit: Jan 12th, 2014 at 2:33am by bigjohn »  

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Re: Devon County Council Use Of 0345
Reply #6 - Jan 12th, 2014 at 2:38am
 
bigjohn wrote on Jan 12th, 2014 at 2:26am:
Devon County Council are promoting some 0345 numbers
see http://www.devon.gov.uk/contact_us

The main general enquries  number  0845 155 1015 also works if you call the 0345 alternative 0345 155 1015,and i would guess so would the others.Presumeably they intend to switch to 0345 completely in due course.

I found this page on the Devon Adoption website which says that the new 0345 number for it was available from 22 October 2013.

It looks like Devon County Council is another one down (or at least almost down).
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Devon County Council 0845 Numbers.
Reply #7 - Apr 17th, 2017 at 8:40pm
 
Note the council here https://new.devon.gov.uk/help/contact-us/ in some cases still promote the same old 0845 number alongside the newer 0345 number .
Meaning if the caller calls the 0845 one they get a revenue share naughty or what.
Whilst they touch upon cost of calling 03 numbers. No mention of service charges for calling 0845.

If the Fair Telecoms Campaign would like to take this one on  i would be grateful.  Smiley
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« Last Edit: Apr 17th, 2017 at 8:55pm by bigjohn »  

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Re: Devon County Council 0845 Numbers.
Reply #8 - Apr 17th, 2017 at 9:51pm
 

I am surprised the parallel 0845 numbers still linger on, more than three years after the Cabinet Office directed public services to get rid of them.

Most other organisations installed an announcement on their 0845 numbers directing callers to hang up and re-dial the new 0345 numbers. HMRC did this in 2014 before scrapping the 0845 numbers in 2015. DWP also installed similar announcements in late 2014 and they are still in place in 2017.

On another note, East Devon District Council hasn't even begun the process of migrating their 0845 numbers. Both councils will need some attention to progress things.

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Re: Low income helplines - Devon County Council Style
Reply #9 - Apr 21st, 2017 at 2:06pm
 
I find it very shocking myself.

I see no reason (other than either money making, or covering "costs", or mis-advice) for keeping these numbers!

East Devon County Council has an 0844 number for taking payments for council tax - here, I note there IS calling charge information, but even still... penalising anyone for making an over the phone payment is outrageous!
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Re: Low income helplines - Devon County Council Style
Reply #10 - Apr 22nd, 2017 at 7:31pm
 

A large number of people continue to believe that 0845 numbers are 'local rate' even though this ceased to be true in 2004. Several providers of 0845 numbers continue to sell them to unsuspecting businesses and organisations on that demonstratably false basis.

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« Last Edit: Apr 23rd, 2017 at 11:15pm by Ian01 »  
 
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