So one of my people who had bed bugs, also received a bill for close to $1000.00 for the treatment.
They of course (as I knew they would) flipped out and refused to pay because in their eyes, either the apartment complex or our agency should be responsible. I knew I could recommend they go to DSS and ask for a "one-shot-deal" to pay, however, they do have a special needs trust as a result of the settlement of their accident, with a decent (not huge) amount of cash in there that would most likely make them ineligible for this "emergency" money.
As a tax-payer in this county, I personally agree with this rule. It sucks, but if you do have $$$$ available you need to tap into that (again IMO) first, before you request tax-payer money to pay. Especially because there are people in worse situations that need access to these kinds of emergency funds.
SO......I decided to call their trustee and ask if they could take the $$$$ out of the trust as well as purchase them a new piece of furniture that they threw out as a result of the bed bug infestation. The trustee agreed on the condition that I not inform my client where the $$$$$ came from. (Again because the client will FREAK knowing this is her $$$$$$).
I talked it over with my supervisor, who felt that this was okay, because as this client's social worker, I really do not have a say how the funds in their trust be spent.
I've been telling my client that I found a resource in the community that would pay their bill and purchase them new furniture.
I also am not sharing the resource with most of the rest of the team because I don't want to take the chance that someone tells them where I came up with the $$$$$$.
What do you think? Am I being deceitful? Should I have kept this info from my client? One of my co-workers told me I was overthinking this too much and that I should feel grateful that my client has a trust they can tap into when needed.