aannnnuuaall rreeppoorrtt...

of 22/22
Citizens Advice Wakefield District – Annual Report 2014-2015 A A N N N N U U A A L L R R E E P P O O R R T T 2 2 0 0 1 1 4 4 - - 2 2 0 0 1 1 5 5 The service aims: To provide the advice people need for the problems they face To improve the policies and practices that affect people’s lives The Citizens Advice service provides free, independent, confidential and impartial advice to everyone on their rights and responsibilities. It values diversity, promotes equality and challenges discrimination.

Post on 27-Jul-2018




0 download

Embed Size (px)


  • Citizens Advice Wakefield District Annual Report 2014-2015



    The service aims:

    To provide the advice people need for the problems they face

    To improve the policies and practices that affect peoples lives

    The Citizens Advice service provides free, independent, confidential

    and impartial advice to everyone on their rights and responsibilities.

    It values diversity, promotes equality and challenges discrimination.

  • Wakefield District Citizens Advice Bureaux Annual Report 2014-2015

    Citizens Advice - Wakefield District has adopted the recommended Citizens

    Advice Information Assurance Policy to help us manage information risks. The

    full policy is available in the Office Manual.

    Authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority FRN: 617779

    Citizens Advice Wakefield District is the operating name of

    Wakefield District Citizens Advice Bureau Registered Office: 1st Floor,

    27 King Street, Wakefield, WF1 2SR

    Registered Charity No: 1058086 Registered in England and Wales as a Company

    Limited by guarantee number: 3229045

    Website: www.wakefielddistrictcab.co.uk

    Email: [email protected]

    http://www.wakefielddistrictcab.co.uk/mailto:[email protected]

  • Wakefield District Citizens Advice Bureaux Annual Report 2014-2015


    CHAIR: Sandra Cheseldine

    VICE CHAIR: Sarah Connell


    TRUSTEES: Barry Blakemore Hilary Mitchell

    David Sampson Malcolm Stewardson

    Douglas Dale* Hilary Warriner

    David Francis Michael Wityszyn

    Monica Graham Craig Jones (was Womersley)

    Clare Maguire


    Wendy Anderson Andrew Young

    Michelle Cowper Mandy Larder

    Anne Coysh Jane Laving

    Wendy Dodson Julie Livesey

    Julie McCann Sue McQueen*

    Jill Penny Solveig Rawlings

    Elizabeth Halliday Wayne Sergeant

    Bryn Hirst Zoe Smith

    Ellen Howard Elaine Tomkins

    Pete Hudson Chris Utley

    Yim Ip Irene Walker

    Diane Knee Vivien Klejnow

    Vanessa Oldroyd

    Denotes left during year

  • Wakefield District Citizens Advice Bureaux Annual Report 2014-2015

    VOLUNTEERS: Alan Pratt*

    Alastair McGregor

    Alexander Adamson

    Amylee Swinger

    Ann Razaq

    Anthony Chell

    Batool Ali*

    Carol Stacey

    Cecilia Hewitt*

    Celia Firmin

    Chris Beverley*

    Christine Copley

    Claire Ferguson*

    Colin McBurney

    Daniel Greaves

    Delma Stimpson

    Diane Harper

    Eileen Uttley*

    Eleanor Theile

    Ellen Loughhead

    Emmeline Tandor*

    Eva Jones*

    Faith Whittall

    Gillian Roberts*

    Hayley Lawton

    Heather Crichton-Sharp*

    Helen Turford

    Ian Hutchinson

    Ian Pitchford*

    Jade Foxcroft

    Jan Cleverly

    Jane Holmes

    Jane Scott

    Jennifer Scott

    Joanna Szmuc

    John Wood

    John Holmes

    Jonathan Hughes

    Karen Haist

    Kathleen Seacome

    Katie Todd

    Katie Wawro

    Kirsty Goldrick

    Kudzai Zano-Tigere*

    Laura Sharp*

    Leda Prest

    Lesley Fisher

    Leslie Haskayne

    Lidia Foster*

    Linda Goodhall

    Linzie Hampton*

    Liz Elliott

    Lynn Hobbs*

    Margaret Prime

    Michael Rogers

    Michael Spinoza*

    Michael Liddle

    Michelle Langham

    Musa Ndebele

    Nahida Karim

    Nicola Jennings

    Pamela Shater

    Paul Richardson

    Ramune Zemaitiene*

    Rebecca Pal

    Rebecca Gough

    Rico A

    Riffat Arif

    Robert Radecki

    Robert Smitten

    Rowena Lester*

    Saleem Akhter

    Sandra Scholes*

    Sarah Roberts

    Shalla Akram

    Sheena A Vigors

    Sherrelle Poole*

    Simon Williams

    Sirkka Goodhind

    Steve Borrill

    Steven Wise

    Victoria Emsley

    Zahra Younis

    Zoe Smith*

    *Denotes left during year

  • Wakefield District Citizens Advice Bureaux Annual Report 2014-2015

    Chair`s Report

    Welcome to the Annual Report of Citizens Advice Wakefield District. Further on

    in this report you will read of our achievements and the challenges we have

    found in the last year. We have seen more clients than before, brought

    additional income into the District by helping people to get the correct level of

    benefits, helped people manage their debts and dealt with a wide variety of

    other issues covering housing, employment, consumer issues etc.. Benefits

    work has expanded as the changes to benefits system have been implemented.

    How can we deliver the wide range of advice that we do? It is only possible

    because of support of our dedicated staff and volunteers to whom I want to say

    thank you for your commitment and enthusiasm. We would not be able to

    provide the support that we do to the people of Wakefield District without our

    funders and I would like to thank:-

    Wakefield Metropolitan District Council

    Citizens Advice MAS DAP Fund


    Public Health Wakefield GP Surgery Outreach

    Normanton Town Council

    Featherstone Town Council

    South Elmsall Town Council

    Upton and North Elmsall Parish Council

    Ingeus Work Programme


    There is a saying that nothing stays the same and looking over the last year and

    into the next this seems to sum up the environment in which we are working.

    There are the economic constraints in the public sector which lead to the

    difficult funding environment in which we work. The Membership Agreement

    under which we operate is being revised which will drive changes to the way we

    deliver the Service. National initiatives relating to the delivery of our telephone

    and email service are being introduced. Where there are challenges there is also

    opportunities and Wakefield District Citizens Advice will be at the forefront of

    these developments, looking at ways to improve our service delivery to clients.

    Find out more about what we have been doing and the changes ahead in the

    reports which follow.

  • Wakefield District Citizens Advice Bureaux Annual Report 2014-2015

    Chief Executive`s Report

    2015 has been an important year so far for the bureaux network. Citizens

    Advice has been consulting on the Performance and Quality Framework which

    will form the basis of the new Membership Agreement to be published at the

    2016 conference. CitA is aiming to achieve a more flexible, client lead service.

    This will involve changes to almost everything about our service over the coming


    A brand refresh new logo, colours, graphics and dropping of the word

    bureau after 76 years

    The way quality of advice is measured moving away from 3 yearly audit

    towards monthly sampling and more self-assessment

    Social policy is now known as Research & Campaigning and will be less reliant

    on Evidence Forms and more about local campaigning

    Channel Strategy moving towards a national telephone and digital service

    to which all bureaux will contribute and a more flexible face to face service

    Advice framework developing a client journey which aims to assist clients

    with their problems on the day they access the service where possible. More

    quick advice and less time spent on recording information.

    2015 also sees a continuation of changes to the public sector. NHS structures

    such as public health and the CCG, the Care Act, further reductions to local

    authority budgets, changes to the welfare system and the justice system. It can

    be very confusing negotiating your way around Community Anchors, Connecting

    Care Hubs, Early Help Hubs and so on. We welcome the strength that comes

    from our partnerships with other voluntary sector organisations, particularly

    through the Assembly - the Voice & Influence of the Wakefield VCS.

    The good news is that we have managed to retain almost all of our funding from

    last year Wakefield MDC, Money Advice Service, GP Project, the Work

    Programme, increased outreaches, Think Family. A big thank you, as ever, to the

    local authority for continuing to support us. The outreach at New Hall prison

    has now ended due to changes in leadership at New Hall and we have also seen

    a reduction in the Healthwatch contract. Because of this we have seen only

    minor changes to our staff & volunteers structure with no redundancies. Thank

    you as always to our paid staff and volunteer team for continuing to respond so

    positively to change and for sticking with us throughout. You will see from

    Annes report that volunteer retention has been particularly during the year.

  • Wakefield District Citizens Advice Bureaux Annual Report 2014-2015

    Following are some graphs which will give you a snapshot of what we have

    achieved during the year.

    We helped 8,576 clients during the year with 26,141 problems. The top problem

    categories by far were debt (10,828) and benefits/tax credits (6,452). As usual the

    majority of our clients came from the most deprived areas of the district.

  • Wakefield District Citizens Advice Bureaux Annual Report 2014-2015

    Top 6 problem categories were:

    Debt 10,828 llllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllll

    Benefits & tax credits 6,452 lllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllll

    Legal 1,971 llllllllllll

    Financial services & capability 1,554 llllllllll

    Employment 1,356 llllllll

    Relationships & family 976 llllll

    Top 6 issues within debt were:

    Council tax,comm.chg arrears 1,878 llllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllll

    Unsecd personal loan debts 1,445 lllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllll

    Credit,store+chg card debts 1,037 llllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllll

    Fuel debts 579 lllllllllllllllllllll

    Telephone and Broadband debts 518 lllllllllllllllllll

    Bank+building soc.overdrafts 507 llllllllllllllllll

    Top 6 issues within benefits were:

    Employment Support Allowance 1,246 llllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllll

    Personal independence payment 913 llllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllll

    Working & Child Tax Credits 712 llllllllllllllllllllllllll

    Housing Benefit 699 llllllllllllllllllllllllll

    Jobseekers Allowance 437 llllllllllllllll

    Disability Living Allowance 359 lllllllllllll

    Top 6 issues within employment were:

    Pay & Entitlements 415 lllllllllllllll

    Dismissal 236 llllllll

    Terms & Conditions of Employment 155 lllll

    Dispute resolution 144 lllll

    Redundancy 76 ll

    Self Employment/Business 57 ll

    Top 6 issues within housing were:

    Private sector rented propty 334 llllllllllll

    Environml+neighbour issues 107 lll

    Threatened homelessness 99 lll

    Housing assoc. property 91 lll

    Owner occupier property 56 ll

    Local Authority housing 55 ll

    clients living in Wakefield local authority area were helped last year (April 2014 to

    March 2015) with 26141 problems by the Citizens Advice service.

    What is happening at Wakefield?


  • Citizens Advice Wakefield District Annual Report 2014-2015

  • Citizens Advice Wakefield District Annual Report 2014-2015

    Finance Report

    2014/15 was a year of continuation and stability. Partnership work was

    continued with NOVA and Young Lives to ensure delivery of the Healthwatch

    programme across Wakefield and District. We also continued to deliver and

    subcontract the Work programme once again acting as Lead partners. Our main

    two sources of income continued from WMDC for our Generalist Advice Service

    and CitA for our Money Advice Service. During the year 2014/15 the bureau

    incurred a surplus of 65,524 compared to a surplus of 94,453 the previous

    year. This surplus includes restricted funds of 3,861 which will be spent in this

    new financial year. The surpluses made on unrestricted funding were once again

    due to close monitoring of financial expenditure and we will continue to use

    them in future years to improve both capital development within the

    organisation and new services delivery.

    See below a couple of excerpts from our published accounts:

    Total Total

    2015 2014

    Total Incoming Resources 732,050 741,622

    Total Resources Expended 688,563 647,169

    Net (Expenditure)/Income

    After Transfers and Net Movements in Funds 43,487 94,453

    Balance as at 1 April 2014 547,676 453,223

    Balance as at 31 March 2015 591,163 547,676

    Analysis of Net Assets of Funds

    Restricted Unrestricted Total

    Funds Funds 2015

    Fund balances at 31 March 2015 are represented by:

    Fixed Assets 0 0 0

    Current Assets 3,861 616,744 620,605

    Current Liabilities (0) (29,442)) (29,442)

    3,861 587,302 591,163

  • Wakefield District Citizens Advice Bureaux Annual Report 2014-2015

    The Graph Below shows our main sources of income during 2014/15

    Income (%) by Source 2014/15

    Other income includes Investment income of 3,714, continuation of the reviewing our

    risk assessment on our reserves we have continued with the decision to split our

    investments with 85,000 being placed in Santander for one year, 85,000 in Lloyds TSB

    for one year and 85,000 in CAF for one year, the amount invested in all these accounts

    will be reviewed upon their maturity.

    On behalf of all the trustees we would like to thank our funders for 2014/15, who were:

    Wakefield Metropolitan District Council


    Normanton Town Council

    Featherstone Town Council

    South Elmsall Town Council

    Upton and North Elmsall Parish Council

    Citizens Advice MAS DAP fund

    Wakefield District PCT GP Surgery outreach

    Ingeus - Work Programme


  • Wakefield District Citizens Advice Bureaux Annual Report 2014-2015

    The graph below shows our main types of expenditure during 2014/15

    Expenditure () by type 2014/15

    We have, as in previous years, maintained expenditure in all areas of delivery at a

    minimum whilst at the same time ensured maximum delivery of services by investing in

    our front line staff, which makes up 79% of our overall expenditure. We chose to stay

    with our auditors from the previous year and once again we would like to thank Mark

    Upex from Hansons Chartered Accountants for his support in the production of our

    annual accounts.

  • Wakefield District Citizens Advice Bureaux Annual Report 2014-2015

    Generalist Advice Service 2014-2015

    We had a busy year again seeing three hundred more clients than the previous

    year. The chart below compares the ways of accessing our service over the last

    two years. It is interesting to see that more clients accessed our service via the

    telephone rather than face to face last year. We also introduced an email

    service in October last year which has been very successful.

    Last year we dealt with 26,492 issues. The two main issues were debt 11,334

    issues and benefits 6,337 issues. The main benefit issues dealt with were

    disability benefit issues and problems with tax credits.

    Case Study

    The client had an appointment to check his benefit entitlement. The calculation

    showed that he was being underpaid pension credit by 123.70 per week. The

    client contacted the pension service and was initially told that he was receiving

    the correct amount of pension credit. The adviser wrote a letter on behalf of the

    client to the pension service highlighting the premiums the client should be

    receiving and currently was not.

    The client stated that a week later he received a telephone call from the pension

    service and was informed he would be receiving the extra premiums and that

    they would be backdated for two years. The client has now received a payment

    of 11,000 for his backdated premiums. The client will also be receiving 123.70

    extra a week, he was extremely pleased with the outcome.










    Comparing gateway channels



  • Wakefield District Citizens Advice Bureaux Annual Report 2014-2015

    Volunteer report 2014-2015 During the year we recruited 23 volunteers. We also trained 6 volunteers to

    respond to email enquiries, 3 volunteers to complete disability benefit forms

    and 9 gateway assessors to give generalist advice. It was a very good year for

    volunteer retention we lost 19 volunteer during the year compared to 36 the

    previous year. The chart below shows the reasons why the volunteers left.


    Work Programme Sessions are held monthly at the Pontefract and Wakefield Interserve offices.

    The main issues dealt with at the outreach is benefits, however clients have debt

    issues they will have an appointment made at either our Pontefract outreach or

    our Wakefield office.


    GP project It was another successful year for the project. The advisers dealt with 659 issues

    during the year 69% of which were benefit issues, with nearly half of the issues

    being health related benefits. The advisers also identified 327,199 extra annual

    income for clients. The client survey found that 84% of clients felt that the

    appointment had a positive effect on the overall wellbeing. A further 99% of

    clients found that the advice/information had been helpful.

    Research & campaigning Last year we submitted 240 evidence forms to Citizens Advice, the main issues

    were benefits health & community care and debt. We also took part in the

    following national campaigns:-

    Fair play for prepay

    Make ESA fit for work

    Access to justice

    Scams awareness month

    Pay day loans

    Reasons for volunteers leaving 2014-15

    paid work



  • Wakefield District Citizens Advice Bureaux Annual Report 2014-2015

    Debt Services 2014-2015

    Funding for our debt services came from 3 main sources: The Money Advice Service F2F

    Debt Awareness Project; HMP New Hall Women & YOI and WMDC Think Family Troubled

    Families project. The statistics contained in this report reflect the total across all debt


    2014/15 statistics highlight 11 million pounds worth of debt was dealt with for this period, a drop on the previous year (-2 million), this debt figure represents the total for

    the 1839 individual clients assisted. We saw a 9% increase in debt client numbers on the

    previous year. The need for budgeting advice also increased due to number of clients

    who continued to be affected by the welfare reforms; in particular the spare room

    subsidy (bedroom tax) and the effects of Council Tax Support, which saw more clients

    liable to pay council tax than under the old system of the traditional Council Tax Benefit

    . For this period both locally and nationally Citizens Advice observed Council Tax

    arrears as the biggest type of debt enquiry presented. Factors such as the reduction in

    working hours/inability to increase hours or zero hour contracts via agency work, in

    some instances led to individuals/families not knowing from one week to the next what

    their income would be and an increased reliance on food banks.

    53% of all debt recorded can be attributed to the 30-49 year age range of our

    clients; 57% of all debt clients were female; 43% male.

    84% of all debt clients were from the white British ethnicity group.

    58% of all debt clients do not consider themselves to be disabled; whilst 36%

    consider themselves to be disabled or to suffer with long term health issues.

    20 21

    2 14

    3 5

    4 7

    10 8

    4 2

    0 5 10 15 20 25




    Clients accessing the debt service by postcode area

    (as a percentage)

  • Wakefield District Citizens Advice Bureaux Annual Report 2014-2015

  • Wakefield District Citizens Advice Bureaux Annual Report 2014-2015

  • Wakefield District Citizens Advice Bureaux Annual Report 2014-2015

  • Wakefield District Citizens Advice Bureaux Annual Report 2014-2015

    Healthwatch Advice/Information Line

    The top ten issues advice/information was sought about were:

    Complaints (Hospital servicesnon mental health)

    NHS Charges (combination across all services)

    Quality of diagnosis/care/treatment (Hospital servicesnon mental


    Complaints (General Medical Practitioner services)

    Quality of diagnosis/care/treatment (General Medical Practitioner


    Complaints (Dental services)

    Access to service/information (all services)

    Complaints (Community Care/non mental health)

    Quality of Care (Community Care/mental health)

    Eligibility criteria and assessment of needs (Community Care/non mental


    For 2014/15 the health watch advisers have gained permission from 150 clients

    to share their stories with the wider health watch team based at Nova. This

    information can inform , enter and view visits and trends in particular health and

    social care services across the Wakefield District.

  • Wakefield District Citizens Advice Bureaux Annual Report 2014-2015

    Case Study: 68 year old white British woman; lives alone. She has 2 sons but contact

    with them has become limited. Client suffers from Epilepsy and is taking up to 13

    prescribed tablets each day. Client feels that of late she is becoming more and more

    confused and would like some help on a day to day basis. Client was advised of the LA

    duty to assess a persons need for community care services and given contact details for

    Social Care Direct; client was also advised to make contact with her own GP for an

    assessment if her confusion is a recent development.

    Case Study: Client is the main carer for his 89 year old mother; who was admitted to

    hospital. Client felt that when his mother was in hospital she became frail and confused;

    at this stage a hospital social worker visited his mother (without client being present)

    and made the recommendation for respite care. On the day of discharge client was

    passed a document to sign; he was hurried along and was not given opportunity to

    read the document; thus he did not know what he was signing. Some weeks later the

    client/mother received a bill for approx. 500 for care services received. Client/his

    mother were angry and felt they have been coerced into signing for services they did

    not know they were agreeing too. Client contacted healthwatch for details of how he

    could make a formal complaint. Client was advised about how to make a complaint

    firstly using the care providers complaints process but if not happy with that outcome

    how to take it forward to the Local Government Ombudsman

  • Wakefield District Citizens Advice Bureaux Annual Report 2014-2015

    Case Study: In December 2014 client has a new set of dentures made by her dentist. In

    February 2015 she had to have them adjusted when they became loose due to the

    extraction of 3 teeth. The treatment was done under the NHS at a cost of 225 for the

    original dentures and 50 for the adjustment. The client was not happy with the

    adjustments made and felt that the dentures were not fit for purpose Upon contacting

    the dentist they refused to make any further adjustments and suggested if client wants

    a new pair she would need to pay for them. Client was not happy with this response

    and wanted to take the matter further. Client was advised in the first instance to

    arrange to meet the Practice Manager to try and resolve the matter amicably with her

    long standing dentist. If unsuccessful she would be able to follow the NHS complaints


  • Wakefield District Citizens Advice Bureaux Annual Report 2014-2015


    Telephone 0844 499 4138 Monday-Friday, 9.00-5.00pm


    For DIY problem-solving visit www.adviceguide.org.uk


    27 King Street, Wakefield WF1 2SR

    Monday, Wednesday, Thursday, Friday 9.00 am 5.00 pm

    9.00 am 8.00 pm Tuesday

    First Saturday of every month 9.00 am 1.00 pm

    Pontefract Outreach

    The Yorkshire Coalfield Resource Centre, Thornycroft,

    Halfpenny Lane. Pontefract, WF8 4AY Wednesday, Thursday and Friday, 10.00-1.00pm

    Featherstone Outreach

    The Old Town Hall, Wakefield Road, Featherstone WF7 5WW

    Tuesday 10.00-1.00pm

    Normanton Outreach

    Normanton Town Hall, High Street, Normanton WF6 2DZ

    Monday 10.00-1.00pm

    South Elmsall Outreach

    Westfield Resource Centre, Westfield Lane, South Elmsall WF9 2PU

    Tuesday 10.00am-1.00pm

    Upton & North Elmsall Outreach

    The Village Hall, Harewood Lane, Upton, Pontefract, WF9 1JB

    Wednesday 10.00am-1.00pm

    South Kirkby & Moorthorpe Outreach (from 17 September 2015)

    The Conference Room, Moorthorpe Railway Station, Barnsley Road, South

    Kirkby, WF9 3QF

    Thursday 10.00am-1.00pm