In response to the recent change in renting law, UK Muslim Charity, National Zakat Foundation (NZF), is introducing a Covid recovery scheme to support those at risk of eviction.
The charity which collects Zakat, an obligatory payment in the Islamic faith of 2.5% of annual qualifying wealth which is then distributed back into the Muslim community, is increasing monetary grants to the communities they work in, in light of the recent news.
Throughout the pandemic, the government introduced a law that protected renters with rent arrears from imminent eviction, permitting them between 6 to 4 months’ notice, dependent on the serving date.
As a result of economic improvements, the government has decided to cease this support, however, many renters have still not gained the financial stability they had pre-covid.
Reza Jugon, Head of Service Delivery at NZF explains, ‘Unemployment rates are still higher than before the pandemic at 4.6%, meaning many are still financially vulnerable and likely have both rent and council tax arrears.’
‘Muslims, in particular, was hit hard by the pandemic and the new Covid recovery fund will aim to act as a significant support for this demographic.’
The charity’s scheme has increased their grant limit for both rental and council tax arrears from between £800 and £1,000 to £1500 for both, in line with the demand.
NZF is also introducing new grants, offering ongoing rent support for up to 3 months to help those affected get back on their feet. Other additions include a moving grant of up to £500 and a renovation grant of up to £350 for basic furnishings.
The charity says these grants do not have a set deadline due to the fluidity and uncertainty of the economic situation and want to offer support for as long as needed.
‘Hardship is predicted to increase throughout winter as per annual trends. This covid recovery scheme will act as a lifeline to thousands of Muslims in the UK.’
The scheme is monetary based to tackle urgent and essential issues for renters, however, the charity signposts and refers applicants to specialist organizations were needed regarding issues relating to shelters and housing.