Debt advice for Halifax citizens

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People are being encouraged to stop ignoring those piling bills and do something about the debt they’re in.

Calls from Halifax residents to debt charity StepChange increased by a third in 2014 - with 558 calls from men and women worried about debt.

The average caller owed more than £10,000 in unsecured debts with credit cards, personal loans and overdrafts.

Last week was Debt Awareness Week - but the charity says its an all-year-round problem many people are facing.

Mike O’Connor, Chief Executive of StepChange Debt Charity, said: “More and more families in the Halifax area are falling into debt and struggling to make ends meet.

“For those living on the edge of their financial means, taking control of the situation can seem a daunting, if not impossible, prospect but taking positive steps towards tackling debt is crucial to getting back on your feet. We urge those who are worried about their debt problems to seek free, confidential advice as soon as possible.”

West Yorkshire Trading Standards is supporting the charity to campaign for more people to be debt aware.

Councillor Jayne Booth (Lab, Todmorden) and member of West Yorkshire Trading Standards committee, said: “January can be a tough month, watching the bills pile up on the doormat from the Christmas and winter period.

“Simple things like opening a bank statement can become overwhelming for those who are struggling with debt.

“Debt Awareness Week and all-year-round awareness gives us the opportunity to help people realise there is help and support out there, and that taking steps to deal with financial difficulty need not be as daunting as it may seem.”

David Lodge, Head of West Yorkshire Trading Standards, said: “We hope to reach as many people as possible with advice on the StepChange website and the West Yorkshire Trading Standards twitter account, and face-to-face with the numerous workshops our officers deliver out in the community.”

Concerned people are advised to visit stepchange.org/debtawareness