Calderdale residents to be facing a 'cost of living crisis' this winter

Some Calderdale residents will face a tough winter in the face of a number of financial challenges which could potentially add up to a “cost of living crisis”, councillors have been told.

Saturday, 16th October 2021, 12:00 pm

Councillors have recently raised questions about how the authority might help people bear the impact of a number of issues which potentially affect their finances.

Firstly, in questions to Cabinet members at the full council, Coun Dot Foster (Lab, Sowerby Bridge) said the Government’s decision to end a £20 uplift to Universal Credit introduced in the COVID-19 pandemic would put some families under pressure.

“It’s the difference between heating or eating, or whether your children have a new winter coat – what measures have the council put in place?” she said.

Calderdale residents will face a tough winter in the face of a number of financial challenges

Cabinet member for Public Services and Communities, Coun Jenny Lynn (Lab, Park) said there were a number of ways could help.

“It’s going to be a tough winter for many of our residents in Calderdale, ” she said.

Coun Lynn said the councillors could certainly raise their voices against the cuts but in practical terms the council could respond as positively as we can to inquiries about benefit support and housing, and continue working closely with organisations like the Community Foundation for Calderdale, as on the Holiday Hunger scheme for children.

Then Coun James Baker (Lib Dem, Warley) also asked Cabinet members when they met this month about what role the council could play.

He said with gas prices rising, the Universal Credit cut and a National Insurance rise – introduced by the Government to help pay for health and social care – next year people were facing “a cost of living crisis at the moment.”

Coun Lynn said she echoed Coun Baker’s concerns about the challenge to people’s living standards.

“I am in receipt if inquiries from a number of residents worried about how they are going to cope.

“We will do our level best to respond about what support they are entitled to,” she said.

Coun Lynn said the Government were not prepared to continue the uplift and councils were not yet aware of details of money which they might be given to help deal with problems.

“I can assure you our officers will be working very hard to look at what the household support scheme announced by central Government will encompass and do our best to get support out,” she said.

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