September 16, 2022 1.00 pm This story is over 14 months old

Call for council to declare cost of living emergency

Demand on food banks is growing

Lincolnshire’s first cost of living emergency could be declared to stop people from going cold or hungry this winter.

Councillor Amanda Wheeler has warned that soaring bills and rising food bank usage require urgent action.

She wants South Kesteven District Council to organise an emergency summit and to call for the cancellation of the energy price cap increase.

If approved, it is understood that this would be the first Lincolnshire council to declare an emergency over the crisis.

“After an increase of 50% in April this year, Ofgem have again increased the energy price cap, this time by 80%, taking a typical household energy bill to £3,549 a year,” Councillor Wheeler’s motion says.

“As well as soaring energy bills, food prices are growing rapidly and the Bank of England has warned that inflation, currently at 11%, is likely to hit 13%, increasing the risk of recession.

An emergency summit would be called under the plans | Photo: Adobe Stock

“In 2021/22 Grantham’s food bank alone provided 42,723 meals. Demand on all the food banks in our district – Bourne, Stamford and the Deepings – continues to grow.”

Councillor Wheeler, an Independent-aligned Liberal Democrat representing Stamford, wants an emergency summit to bring food banks, Citizens Advice, town and parish councils together in order to discuss how residents can be supported.

The motion also calls for improved communication around Housing Benefit and Council Tax support schemes to ensure that people on low income get all the help they’re entitled to.

The call will be put before the full South Kesteven District Council next week.

It can be read in full here.

If you need advice or support, Citizens Advice branches offer help for people living in Lincoln, South Lincolnshire, Mid Lincolnshire, and Lindsey.