Salford City Council calls on government to extend vital funding

Salford City Council has called on government to extend vital funding which has supported more than 18,000 residents.

Political leaders within Salford City Council have this week joined forces, displaying a united front across the political spectrum, as they urge the government to extend the Household Support Fund (HSF). HSF funding is currently scheduled to end after 31 March 2024.

First introduced in October 2021, HSF supports households struggling to cover costs of food, energy and water bills as well as other essentials. The most recent round of funding allocated £5.4 million to Salford.

Salford City Mayor - Paul Dennett, Leader of the Official Opposition and the Conservative Councillors Group at Salford City Council - Councillor Robin Garrido, Lead Member for Inclusive Economy, Anti-Poverty and Equalities - Councillor Sharmina August, and Salford’s Members of Parliament (MPs) have all now written to the Secretary of State outlining their concerns about the impact of the loss of the Household Support Fund on Salford and its residents.

Salford City Council has supported residents with energy and food bills but the funding will end in March 2024. Additionally, HSF funded holiday food vouchers for children eligible for Free School Meals; Voluntary, Community and Social Enterprise (VCSE) partners to deliver food banks, food clubs and food schemes; and other areas of the council such as housing, adult social care, and welfare rights and debt advice.

A recent report conducted by Greater Manchester Poverty Action (GMPA) showcased that this funding “provided a vital lifeline to [Salford] residents experiencing financial difficulties” and that the loss of this funding from the end of March onwards will have a “significant” impact on the council’s ability to support residents.

One beneficiary said: "you have saved my life” following them receiving help from the fund. Residents also described how they had very little food left, how their homes had been cold for a prolonged period and how desperate they felt in providing for their children.

Salford City Mayor Paul Dennett said: “The cost-of-living crisis continues to exert a significant toll on the residents of Salford, exacerbating vulnerabilities and deepening inequalities. The Household Support Fund has been a crucial safety net, offering our residents much-needed support with food and heating, and ensuring that children on free school meals do not go hungry during school holidays.

“In these trying times, the fund has been more than a financial aid; it has been a source of hope and solidarity across Salford. The continuation of the Household Support Fund transcends fiscal considerations, embodying our moral responsibility to ensure no one is left behind, and that families do not have to choose between heating or eating.”

To learn more about this funding and how to apply visit Salford City Council’s Household Support Fund page.

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Date published
Friday 1 March 2024

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