The Government have today (26 May) announced the following measures in response to the escalating cost of living crisis.
- a one-off £650 cost of living payment directly to around eight million households on Universal Credit, Tax Credits, Pension Credit and legacy benefits
- an extra, one-off pensioner cost of living payment of £300 for over eight million pensioner households who receive the Winter Fuel Payment
- an extra one-off disability cost of living payment worth £150 to help the 6 million people who receive non-means tested disability benefits
- a £400 discount (doubled from £200) to support household energy bills from October via the Energy Bills Support Scheme (and repayments cancelled)
- a temporary, targeted Energy Profits Levy charged on profits of oil and gas companies
For more information about the measures, visit the government website.
Equity General Secretary Paul W Fleming responded with the following statement:
"After months of the pressure from Equity and the trade union movement about the cost of living crisis, the Chancellor has finally caved in and announced a package to support households across the country who face escalating energy and food bills. However, it is a disgrace to not include the permanent uprating of benefits and making Universal Credit work for self-employed people.
Short term measures are necessary, but it’s folly to say that the cost of living crisis is temporary. We need a long term strategy to tackle the structural inequalities that have grown over recent decades — only strong trade unions winning higher pay can do this. Employment and labour law reform, with full backing from government is the only strategy that can fix this crisis permanently."
Trade unions and groups from across the movement came out to demand a stronger government response to the Cost of Living Crisis.