Monthly Archives: May 2017

Dementia awareness week 15 to 21 May 2017

15 -21 May is Dementia Awareness Week and Ipswich Citizens Advice is reminding people that financial planning can be a crucial factor in helping people living with the disease.

Nicky Willshere, Chief Officer at Ipswich Citizens Advice said:

“When someone receives a diagnosis it is understandable that they will take some time to process what it means to them and their family. However, by taking positive action and controlling what choices can be made on your behalf, when and by whom, it can take a lot of worry out of the future.“

“Organising your affairs is prudent at any time but should you or a loved one face a diagnosis of Dementia or Alzheimer’s one of the most important things you can do to ensure your wishes are carried out is to thoroughly review and update your financial and legal affairs.“

Nicky adds,

“This could be as simple as updating contact information and details on existing legal papers such as leases, insurance policies, agreements, other contracts or just writing a will. However, in more complex cases it may be that you want to consult a solicitor to appoint guardians or enact an Enduring Power of Attorney (EPA).“

Ipswich Citizens Advice is taking this week as an opportunity to remind people to talk to family members, older and younger, ensuring others know your wishes and financially planning to ensure they are carried out.”

Nicky concludes

”We urge people facing these life changing circumstances to consult our website to review what benefits entitlements they might have and to find out how to protect loved ones from being scammed. We also offer a Money Advice Drop-In on Wednesdays from 1pm to 3pm at our offices in Tower Street. People are welcome to come along and we can help them plan for the future.”

People in Ipswich are being encouraged to claim their right to paid holiday

Citizens Advice Ipswich helped 558 clients with issues related to employment between April 2016 and March 2017 and a number of these dealt with the issue of holiday entitlement and pay.

Nationwide research by Citizens Advice recently found that half of people on zero hours contracts, and 2 in 5 people on temporary contracts wrongly believe they are not entitled to paid holidays.

It also found examples of employers withholding paid holiday from carers working night shifts, workers who didn’t meet their sales targets, and staff who the employers had wrongly categorised as self-employed.

All workers are entitled to holiday pay regardless of their type of contract – whether it’s full-time, part-time, agency or casual work. You are entitled to up to 28 days holiday a year – depending how many days a week you work.

Citizens Advice nationally has helped people with this issue including one case of a man who worked in a care home for over 5 years, working 48 hours a week. His employer had previously told him that night workers are not entitled to paid holiday, and he had never questioned this until recently. When he visited Citizens Advice, it was calculated that he has incorrectly missed out on paid holiday of £8,900.

In another a woman who worked in the sales sector, was told she could only take holiday if she met her sales targets, which is unlawful.

The charity is calling on the next government to ensure workers are aware of, and are able to take, the paid holiday that they are entitled to.

Citizens Advice Ipswich Manager, Nicky Willshere said:

“Half of people on zero hours contracts, and many on temporary contracts, think they are not entitled to paid holiday. There is a lot of confusion and we have seen examples where employees have missed out through a lack of awareness of their rights.”

“With more than half of employers having staff working shifts or variable hours, people need to be more aware of their rights over paid holiday. Anyone who is unsure of their situation or thinks they are missing out should contact us for help.”

“But we also think there is a role for the next government to help people get what they are entitled to by boosting enforcement and reducing the costs of employment tribunals.”

Citizens Advice Ipswich wants the next government to:

  • Combine the enforcement of employment rights into one powerful Fair Work Authority that can tackle employers that break the rules.
  • Place a £50 cap on Employment Tribunal fees so that people who are treated unfairly by their employer aren’t denied access to justice.
  • Define self-employment in law to prevent exploitative employers restricting people’s rights, including access to the minimum wage, holiday and sick pay.