Survivors of the fire in Grenfell Tower in Kensington lost everything except the clothes they slept in. They lost not just their clothes and possessions but also any cash they had and their bank cards. Any financial records such as insurance policies will also have been lost.
Access to your own money means establishing your ID. The banks all say they have procedures in place to enable customers with no documents to establish who they are. In some cases specialist staff will be available.
They will speed up the process of supplying debit cards. Barclays says it can do them on the same day and will take customers to a branch where that can be done.
The banks say emergency access to cash and if necessary overdrafts will be available to customers who need it.
Some banks will be opening local branches over the weekend.
Here are the bank helplines
Bank of Scotland 0345 721 3141
Barclays 0345 734 5345
Coop 03457 212212
Halifax 0345 720 3040
HSBC 03456 092527
Lloyds 0345 300 0000
Nationwide 0800 917 23 93
NatWest 0161 451 0217
Royal Bank of Scotland 0161 451 0218Santander 0800 0156 382
Residents who did have insurance should contact their insurer. People who may not remember who the policy is with should check their bank statements to find who they paid. Insurers should act swiftly to provide cash and meet claims. They understand it will be difficult for residents who have lost all their documents in the fire.
At least one in four households have no insurance for their possessions. In areas where incomes are low the proportion is higher. So it is possible that half or more of the survivors have no cover for the losses they have incurred.
The funds raised for residents are being administered centrally by the Charities Commission. People should apply locally or call the Red Cross on 0800 458 9472.
Local residents who need or want legal advice can contact North Kensington Law Centre or call 020 8969 7473 or email email@example.com
There is a very comprehensive list of where to get help on the Government's support for people affected page. It includes benefits, physical injuries, exposure to smoke, mental health, psychological trauma, passports and immigration, driving licences, pets, and bereavement support. Also details of how to volunteer or give money.
25 June 2017