A hefty £2.95million of debt has been managed by Mid & East Antrim Citizens’ Advice Bureau in just 12 months, it has been revealed.
The revelation was contained in performance statistics for the bureau from April, 2015, to March of this year, presented to Mid & East Antrim Council’s Community Planning committee last week as part of an update report on the delivery of advice services across the borough through the Bureau.
The report pointed out that the Bureau is currently under a service level agreement with Council to provide advice services for the borough at a cost to ratepayers of £220,000 per year.
The statistics confirmed that benefits continued to be the number one issue for the Bureau and revealed that just over £3.7million of additional benefits had been claimed for clients as a result of Mid & East Antrim CAB assistance.
Broken down, this comprised £601,685 in Housing Benefit, £1,108,788 in Disability Benefit/Attendance Allowance, £316,482 in Pension Credit/Income Support, £585,743 ESA, £807,027 in Tax Credits, and £288,820 in relation to other benefits.
Mid & East Antrim Citizens’ Advice covers Ballymena, Carrickfergus, and Larne which are all contactable on one telephone number: 028 96001333.