Southwark Council calls for extended financial support for residents
7 February 2022
On 2 February, Southwark Council wrote to the Secretary of State, co-signed from council tenants, a food bank, pensioners’ charity and the Citizens Advice Bureau in the borough asking the Government to reconsider its ending the household support fund in March.
This is crucially important if we are to continue to tackle the cost of living crisis, which is crippling our poorest residents – Universal Credit claimants doubled during the pandemic and it is feared that many cannot afford heating bills now. An extensive survey of our council tenants was carried out in September last year and many have had to go without food or heating:
Councillor Alice Macdonald, cabinet member for Equalities, Neighbourhoods and Leisure, said: “It is shocking and heart-breaking to see Southwark residents having to sacrifice essentials many take for granted in order to afford energy bills. A survey of council tenants in our borough has shown that of those who have lost income during the pandemic, 16 per cent will go without food or heating. Whilst the Government has provided some funding, this does not go far enough to address the need here and runs out in March.
“We’ve stepped in to provide extra support for energy bills to those on the lowest incomes to residents but we need a long-term sustainable solution and the Government to rethink some of its most damaging decisions from tax hikes to cuts to Universal Credit. We need them to focus on the things that matter and produce a serious plan to tackle the cost of living crisis which is hitting people here so hard.”
Page last updated: 07 February 2022