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9 November, 2020 Open access

Government announces £170 million Winter Grant Scheme to support vulnerable households in England during the COVID-19 pandemic

Work and Pensions Secretary says 'we want to make sure vulnerable people feel cared for throughout this difficult time'

The government has announced a £170 million Winter Grant Scheme to support vulnerable households in England during the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.

As part of a 'winter package' - designed to ensure hard-hit children and families get the extra support they need during the pandemic - the government has confirmed that the new grant scheme will be administered by local councils and will - 

In addition, the winter package includes - 

Commenting on the additional funding, Secretary of State for Work and Pensions Dr Thérèse Coffey said - 

'We want to make sure vulnerable people feel cared for throughout this difficult time and, above all, no one should go hungry or be unable to pay their bills this winter.

We know this has been a challenging time for many, and we have consistently supported the lowest-paid families, protecting 9 million jobs with furlough and boosting welfare support by £9.3 billion.

This package builds on that support, and by extending our successful Holiday Activities and Food programme, as well as funding a £170 million Covid Winter Grant Scheme, we are making sure families get the help they need.'

NB - on 21 October 2020, the House of Commons voted against a motion to extend free school meals in England by 322 votes to 261.

For more information, see New winter package to provide further support for children and families from gov.uk