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Chancellor’s Spring Statement

Posted 23 March 2022

New research* from Citizens Advice shows many more of us struggling to pay essential bills. In today’s Spring Statement Chancellor Sunak can help stop a serious cost of living crisis. We hope he will.

Across the country £145-a-month rises in energy costs in October could mean one in four adults unable to afford their bill. That’s equivalent to 14.5 million people.

Here in Surrey the count is certainly lower. But a growing number of residents are facing real difficulty. The number of clients needing food or charitable support in the second half of 2021-22 was 60 per cent up on the first half. Actual need occasions show the same rising trend (chart).

What should the chancellor do? We have 3 ‘asks’, if not for today then the near future:

  1. Increase benefits in line with inflation now (6.2% announced today), rather than last September’s rate (3.1%) as the government currently plans
  2. Expand the Warm Home Discount
  3. Bring forward a more generous energy rebate.

* Crunch Point: Protecting households from record energy bills in the coming months, Citizens Advice, 18/03/22

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