Isle of Wight Charity welcomes Chancellor’s Cost of Living hand-up

The local Footprint Trust charity has welcomed the surprising news that thousands of low-income Isle of Wight households are to benefit from the government’s Cost of Living support package, announced by the Chancellor last Thursday (26th May 2022)

This means the most vulnerable households will get £1,200 of one-off support this year, with the majority of domestic electricity customers receiving at least £400.

Households will get £400 taken off their energy bills. This replaces the proposed £200 energy loan, which was widely condemned by consumer champion Martin Lewis and many UK charities in including the Footprint Trust, which assists people in fuel poverty. Island households on ‘means tested’ benefits will receive a payment of £650 this year, made in two instalments. This payment will be tax-free, will not count towards the benefit cap, and will not have any impact on existing benefit awards.

 

Pensioner households will receive an extra £300 this year to help them cover the rising cost of energy this winter. This Fuel Payment and will be paid on top of any other one-off support a pensioner household is entitled to. A £150 Disability Cost of Living Payment will be paid to those in receipt of; DLA, PIP, Attendance Allowance, Armed Forces Independence Payment, Constant Attendance Allowance and War Pension Mobility Supplement.

 

Speaking on behalf of the Trust, their General Manager Ray Harrington-Vail, said,

“We are very welcoming of this about turn in government policy, we never believed that the £200 energy loan was a good idea, as it would not have helped the fuel poor, and increased debt. The current package addresses the current crises, but we also need a long-term policy, to lift people out of fuel poverty and to insulate our housing stock.”

 

“The latest figures show that the Island has the second highest levels of fuel poverty in England, at around 18%. This is particularly evidenced by the large numbers of people calling our helpline, very worried about the energy price hikes.”

 

For guidance on energy concerns please email the Trust on

 info@footprint-trust.co.uk   or call 01983 822282.