Collaboration between county and district councils to build and improve financial resilience is key to the long-term financial sustainability of local government.
By combining datasets and applying analysis using the Low Income Family Tracker (LIFT) platform, it is possible to identify households that may be struggling financially and missing out on supports such as Pension Credit or the Warm Homes Discount Scheme.
Districts have the data, knowledge and expertise. County has size and scale. We had to combine the best of us to come up with something that’s going to help many in a positive way.
Zena Cooke, Director of Corporate Finance, Kent County Council
Essex could see an economic impact of over £1.5 million in one year
from one Pension Credit take up campaign
Sample data-led campaign
There are approximately 1,204 pension age households eligible for but not claiming Pension Credit in Essex.
Similar campaigns usually result in a take up of around 33%, which could mean direct financial assistance towards the rising cost of living for 398 pension age households across the county.
Click on the districts on the map to see the estimated value of unclaimed Pension Credit in each.
Unclaimed Pension Credit (PC) for households in receipt of Housing Benefit (HB)
|Local authority||Number of pension age households claiming HB||Est. number of HB claimants eligible for PC and not claiming||Est. value of unclaimed PC p/a||Est. take up from a data-led PC campaign||Est. value of PC take up p/a||Est. backdated PC amount||Est. passported benefits* p/a||Estimated economic impact in 1 year|
|Braintree District Council||2,420||133||£359,100||44||£118,592||£26,090||£28,945||£173,628|
|Castle Point Borough Council||1,130||62||£167,400||21||£55,376||£12,183||£13,516||£81,074|
|Chelmsford City Council||2,138||118||£318,600||39||£104,773||£23,050||£25,572||£153,395|
|Colchester Borough Council||2,285||126||£340,200||41||£111,976||£24,635||£27,331||£163,942|
|Epping Forest District Council||1,959||108||£291,600||36||£96,001||£21,120||£23,431||£140,552|
|Maldon District Council||966||53||£143,100||18||£47,339||£10,415||£11,554||£69,308|
|Rochford District Council||981||54||£145,800||18||£48,074||£10,576||£11,734||£70,384|
|Tendring District Council||3,007||165||£445,500||55||£147,358||£32,419||£35,966||£215,743|
|Uttlesford District Council||1,131||62||£167,400||21||£55,425||£12,193||£13,528||£81,146|
*Passported benefits are further financial support which a claimant becomes entitled to through a successful claim for means-tested benefit.
Book a free consultation to learn more about the methodology behind the above calculations or to discuss how you can implement a targeted take up campaign in your area.
Other popular take up campaigns include:
- Discretionary Housing Payments
- Free School Meals
- Council Tax Reduction
- Smart Council Tax collection
- Homelessness intervention
- Severe Disability Premium
- Employment Support
Case study: Kent county and district councils collaborate with data to tackle poverty
Kent County Council wanted to tackle poverty across the county by identifying and engaging with vulnerable residents they were aware of, and those they weren’t. With datasets stored on separate systems, identifying those in need of support was difficult.
Kent county and district councils collaboratively shared their data to get powerful insights for their poverty prevention activity. A newly created Living Standards Index allows users to track Council Tax support spend across all districts and assess local demand. They can drill down to household level to accurately target support.
Better use of data lead to effective preventative poverty campaigns:
- £1,232,898 of extra income to Kent residents so far
- 50 current active campaigns with 25 completed in 2021-22
- Outcomes showing how county and district councils can work collaboratively with data to benefit residents and reduce future costs to the council