No doubt many will be aware of the serious concerns about the UK Government’s administration of the Tax Credit system in general, and around their current provider Concentrix. Recent publicity has highlighted that Concentrix failed to meet its agreed performance standards 120 times in just under a year and as a result, the HMRC have now taken action in announcing that the Concentrix contract will not be renewed. There are questions about the administration of the Tax Credit system and about Concentrix in particular. In the last month alone I’ve received a significant amount of correspondence from constituents specifically regarding Concentrix, evidence of the huge amount of anxiety that is being caused. Labour MPs are planning to call for an Opposition Day Debate to highlight these concerns when Parliament sits next week.
Last week I had the privilege of attending the Volunteering Celebration, organised by VAMT, at the Redhouse. As someone who has spent many years working and volunteering in the sector, I recognise the significant role that volunteers play in our communities. Volunteers do what they do for a variety of reasons, sometimes the work they do goes unrecognised, therefore, it is important that ceremonies like the one held last week and similar ones held by GAVO in the Rhymney Valley help to ensure that we do not take volunteers for granted.
Recently, I was delighted to attend Merthyr Tydfil Annual Business Awards at Cyfarthfa Park. It was great to have the opportunity to show my support to local businesses and recognise their achievements in a tough economic climate. We all know it’s been a really tough time for everyone in recent years, including the business community. I also attended a meeting of the Merthyr Tydfil Business Club to offer support and to discuss ways of working together for the benefit of our area.
I was also lucky enough to attend the Caerphilly Homes Annual Awards. It was an opportunity to show support for the work being done to transform homes, lives and communities as part of Caerphilly CBC’s work under the Welsh Housing Quality Standards Programmes. It was great to see the contribution from many tenants, including a significant number from the Upper Rhymney Valley and others associated with the investment playing their part in this taking this work forward.
This article was originally published by the Merthyr Express and the Rhymney Valley Express. If you have been affected by any of the issues raised or would like to know more, feel free to contact Gerald using the contact tab above.