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LOCAL MP CALLS FOR GOVERNMENT TO ACT OVER THE COST OF LIVING

June 8, 2022 10:35 AM

On the floor of the House of Commons last week, South Lakes MP Tim Farron demanded the government take real action to tackle the cost-of-living crisis across all sectors, discussing the knock-on effect of the crisis on housing, care staff, and fuel.

Speaking during the cost-of-living debate, Tim recognised that whilst his constituency has a high level of employment, families are still struggling to put food on the table and pay their rent or mortgage; he called the issue a: "crisis like no other facing this country."

Tim made mention of the housing crisis facing his constituents which is only being worsened by the rising costs of living: "The cost of living in an area such as ours is exacerbated by the cost of housing.

"The average house price in my constituency is about £270,000 and the average household income is about £26,000. Do the maths: nobody on an average income can afford anything like an average home in our community.

"There is extra pressure because the pandemic has massively increased the housing need in our area. We have seen the absolute evaporation of the long-term private rented market into the holiday let market. In my community, there has been a 32% rise in one year in the number of homes going into the holiday let sector. What were those holiday lets beforehand? They were people's homes-family homes."

Continuing, Tim warned of the impact the cost of living and resulting housing issues will have on our workforce: "In the dales town of Sedbergh, which is a relatively small place, with fewer than 2,000 houses, there were 103 job vacancies as of last week because there is nowhere affordable for anybody on a modest, moderate, average or low income to rent, never mind buy-that is for the birds in the current era.

"That impacts on business. Some of the poorest people I know in communities such as mine run their own businesses. They pay and keep their staff-they cannot recruit enough staff-and they pay themselves less than the minimum wage.

"They live on next to nothing; they live in poverty."

Speaking afterwards, Tim said: "We should all be demanding more support from our government on these issues as their lackadaisical attitude towards helping normal people is driving them into poverty. Their press releases will not pay bills. They must act now"