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How we work

NUJ Extra

We begin as soon as we receive your completed application form. First, we contact the nearest NUJ branch. If there is a local branch welfare officer, they will get in touch with you to offer assistance and they will tell us about your circumstances.

The chair of NUJ extra may be able to make a decision quickly about how best to help. In addition to grants or paying bills, this may include offering debt counselling or other services. We provide temporary help to most applicants, but we may offer long-term help to some dependants, making regular payments to top up their income.

The trustees produce a set of guidelines to help the chair make these decisions. You can read these in full at the bottom of this page.

The chair's decisions are "interim" and must later be endorsed by the trustees. That means the chair may offer short-term help and the trustees could later add to that. If your application includes unusual aspects, the chair may not be able to make an interim decision and will refer your application to the next full meeting of the trustees.

Trustees meet four times a year. At these meetings, the trustees review recent applications and may offer further help. They trustees also review our guidelines once a year, setting the income levels we aim to provide to our long-term beneficiaries.

Please bear in mind that the chair and the trustees are all volunteers, not paid staff of NUJ extra. You will be kept informed as quickly as possible. More information about how can we help you.

We may also suggest you apply to the Journalists' Charity for additional help. We work with the Journalists' Charity to ensure we provide the maximum help we can.

Guidelines 2016-2017

1. All grants are discretionary. In exceptional circumstances, the grants set out below may be varied by the Trustees. The Trustees act as the Management Committee of the Fund. All applicants are expected to apply for all state benefits that they are entitled to as grants will not be used to replace such benefits. Grants will not normally be given to pay for private medicine or private education.

2. Applications for help from NUJ Extra will be considered from dependants of deceased NUJ members, members of the NUJ, ex members of the NUJ who have left in good standing. In all cases, the NUJ member must have paid at least one year’s contributions at the appropriate full members' rate in order to be considered for assistance. Former members, whose membership ceased because of lapsing or expulsion, shall not normally qualify for help, unless extenuating circumstances are established to the Trustees’ satisfaction.

3. (i) The basis of assistance shall be need, taking into account the total income and reserves of the applicant which must be declared by the applicant on the application form.

(ii) An applicant may be awarded a one-off grant to cover immediate need and/or a weekly/monthly grant. This will be at the discretion of the Trustees.

(iii) At the discretion of the Trustees, expenditure arising from any disability shall be taken into account.

(iv) A beneficiary who is in receipt of continuing help will normally receive a grant calculated by subtracting their total weekly income from an agreed poverty threshold figure for the nation in which they live, plus 15% or a figure as decided by the Trustees. Therefore, the grant will make up the difference between the applicant’s total weekly income and this figure. The poverty threshold figure will be that established by an appropriate campaigning or national organisation for each nation and will be reviewed annually. An extra £100 or Euro equivalent shall be allocated for each dependant.

(v) An applicant shall not normally receive a grant if his/her reserves exceed £12,000. In the case of each dependant of a beneficiary, this figure shall be increased by £2000.

4. All continuing grants shall be reviewed at least once a year by the Trustees.

5. If the applicant owns the house in which he/she lives, the value of that house shall be ignored in calculating reserves, but any rent received from letting shall be included in the weekly income.

6. All capital reserves and income must be declared and beneficiaries must apply for all state, company, insurance or other benefits to which they are entitled.

7. With regard to continuing beneficiaries, to ease the transition when the applicant ceases to be dependant, the necessary reduction in income may be made in three instalments.

8. Beneficiaries receiving grants for equipment will be informed that it’s theirs to keep. However, should equipment cost more than £500 become unsuitable and/or no longer needed, they will be asked to inform the charity in case it is needed by another NUJ beneficiary.

9. Applications should normally be endorsed by the member’s branch welfare officer and/or branch or chapel committee unless the member, ex-member or dependants, live in an area not covered by a branch.

10. The Chair may make awards between meetings to cover emergency need. This must be endorsed by the next meeting of the Trustees.

11. It is the policy of the Trustees that NUJ Extra’s reserves will not be used to help pay the credit card debts of an applicant.

Updated 06.09.2016

Donate to NUJ extra – anyone can donate money to the charity. Members should log in to the website before making a donation to avoid filling in forms.

NUJ extra is registered under the Charities Act (in England and Wales) and is regulated by the Charity Commission. NUJ extra's registration number is 1112489.

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