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How to contact NUJ Extra for help

UNDER the NUJ's rules, London Freelance Branch members who expect to experience hardship should contact Branch Welfare Officer Tim Dawson (see here), who will contact the NUJ's charity NUJ Extra. If you expect serious trouble it'd be best to contact him in the near future to arrange a chat about how the Union can help, rather than waiting until you are already skint and desperate.

Just discussing in plenty of time what the problems are and what can be done can be hugely helpful.

On 7 May the NUJ trustees issued an update. "We are aware that a number of members may not have yet applied for assistance and we want to urge you to do so... This may be because you, or a family member, are or have been, ill with the virus. It may be because contracts have been cancelled or just because there are now fewer outlets to whom you to pitch your work, or fewer shifts on offer. It may even be because the work on offer is lower paid. You may be unable to work, or can only do reduced hours, because you now have caring responsibilities, such as home-schooling children. There may be other reasons.

"You don't need to have lost your entire income but you may be severely affected by your reduced ability to earn a living.

"All you need to do is explain your circumstances and provide some examples of the kind of levels of work/income you used to get compared with now. We don't need to see chapter and verse. We cannot replace your entire lost income, but we can make a contribution." See www.nuj.org.uk/news/nuj-extra-covid-19-update-may-2020 and the application form at www.nuj.org.uk/work/nuj-extra/application-form.