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Source: London Assembly

The London Assembly, the 25-member elected body tasked with holding the Mayor to account, has today written to the Mayor of London to highlight the issue that some Londoners cannot book or get a home test for COVID-19 as they are invisible on the credit system.

To book or get a home COVID-19 test, people must complete a TransUnion credit check on the website.

Dr Onkar Sahota, Chair of the London Assembly Health Committee said,

“Over the last few weeks, it has become clear that there is a lack of COVID-19 tests available across the UK and unfortunately, London is not exempt from this issue.

“It has also come to light that credit checks are being carried out by TransUnion in order to book a COVID-19 test anywhere in the UK. There are 5.8 million people in the UK that are invisible to the credit system, because they have little or no credit record in this country. It is likely that many of these people live in London, perhaps hundreds of thousands.

“There are a number of reasons why someone will find themselves in the situation of having a thin credit file – for example, more than 80,000 foreign nationals have come to work in London this year, and there are many thousands of people who are homeless or seeking asylum. Many Londoners have thin credit files because of social and economic disadvantage, and these people are being prevented from accessing home COVID-19 tests because of the difficulties they face in verifying their identity with TransUnion.

“Londoners cannot be sent hundreds of miles to other parts of the UK to take a COVID-19 test or, even worse, left in limbo without access to these much-needed tests due being invisible on the credit system. It is testing that will enable London to function as normally as possible in these extraordinary times. That is why we are asking the Mayor to raise these issues, urgently, with the Government, who must take concrete steps to ensure that everyone who needs one is able to access a COVID-19 test.”

MIL OSI United Kingdom