Search

Cuts to cash from poverty-stricken people sees Islington Council in another legal battle

11:29 29 July 2014

Andy Hull

Andy Hull

Archant

The scrapping of a fund to help victims of domestic violence, homeless people and poverty-stricken pensioners has seen the town hall in yet another legal wrangle.

How the fund is used in Islington:

n Cash from the fund helped teenage brothers Fabian and Jordan stay out of care when their mother left. The money was used to buy rehouse them with their father and enable them to study and live at home.

n Anna, a mum with a young child who had been abused by her husband and his family, was able to rebuild both their lives thanks to the fund after it was used to get furniture for her new flat, as well as help her to get a job and manage her money.

n Mr Holroyd, who lives alone in a high-rise building, is rarely able to go outside due to his chronic back pain. He had a worn-out bed and no way to wash his own clothes. Money from the LWPF helped get him a new bed and washing machine.

Names have been changed to protect identities

Islington Council will join the Child Poverty Action group and a disabled man from Cheshire to take High Court action against a joint decision by the Department for Communities and Local Government (DCLG) and the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) to axe the Local Welfare Provision Fund (LWPF) next April.

The borough’s £3.2million share is used to help out thousands of Islington families in serious hardship, as well as pregnant mothers, care leavers and people suffering from chronic physical and mental health problems.

Cllr Andy Hull, Islington Council’s executive member for finance, said: “The government are tearing away what little is left of the safety net, driving people to foodbanks and payday lenders, but getting them even to admit it is like pulling teeth.

“They say they’re not cutting the funding, yet they’re cutting the money. Beneath the doublespeak, this is yet another blow to the most vulnerable in our society who are already reeling from successive social security cuts.”

“For the Government to say the council should now somehow pick up the bill is disingenuous when they have cut a third off our budget over the past four years and look set to cut another third off it in the four years to come. They are trying to transfer the risk and cost of its welfare reforms to local authorities.”

“Any civilised Government would recognise that this fund is a lifeline, not a luxury. All the money we have spent from the fund has supported those in real need – keeping families together, sustaining tenancies and helping residents on the breadline to survive.

“So, here in Islington we are making a stand on behalf of the tens of thousands of people across the country who badly need this support.”

During the last couple of years the council have taken legal action over office to flat conversions, GCSE grades, affordable rents and the number of concerts held at Arsenal’s Emirates Stadium.

A government spokesperson said: “We reformed the Social Fund and replaced it with local provision. In contrast to a centralised grant system that was poorly targeted councils can now choose how to best to support those most in need.

“It is for local councils to decide how they spend their budgets.

“After April 2015 Councils will continue to have responsibility for providing support to those in their community who face financial difficulties or who find themselves in unavoidable circumstances, and will be funded through their Central Government grant to do so.”

0 comments

Welcome , please leave your message below.

Optional - JPG files only
Optional - MP3 files only
Optional - 3GP, AVI, MOV, MPG or WMV files
Comments

Please log in to leave a comment and share your views with other Islington Gazette visitors.

We enable people to post comments with the aim of encouraging open debate.

Only people who register and sign up to our terms and conditions can post comments. These terms and conditions explain our house rules and legal guidelines.

Comments are not edited by Islington Gazette staff prior to publication but may be automatically filtered.

If you have a complaint about a comment please contact us by clicking on the Report This Comment button next to the comment.

Not a member yet?

Register to create your own unique Islington Gazette account for free.

Signing up is free, quick and easy and offers you the chance to add comments, personalise the site with local information picked just for you, and more.

Sign up now

Latest Islington News Stories

12:00

The embattled world of football was shown the way by 100 youngsters from Islington community centres who came together for a tournament in the name of peace.

Yesterday, 16:28

Islington kids got the chance to show off their moves with Strictly Come Dancing judge Darcey Bussell yesterday (Thursday) as the Mayor of London rolled out the next stage of his curriculum plans for the capital’s primary schools.

Yesterday, 15:10

More than 2,500 green-minded people in Canonbury set up shop in their gardens to offload unwanted items.

Yesterday, 12:30

Developers trying to transform a Grade-II listed building into a 1,000-capacity private members club have pulled an application for a booze licence at the 11th hour after neighbours objected.

Thu, 17:23

A year ago, Jeremy Corbyn promised Islington North ‘won’t be forgotten’ after he was elected Labour leader. Twelve months on, James Morris asks community leaders across his constituency whether he has kept his word.

Thu, 13:34

A music producer told the Islington councillor who shut down Farringdon superclub Fabric: “Your decision has made me come over all rapey.”

Thu, 12:39

A radical report that recommends moving all council tenants with health issues caused by their damp, mouldy homes will go before cabinet.

Thu, 07:00

The grieving mother of a young man shot dead in a King’s Cross nightclub is today pleading for the community to name her son’s killer after a decade of silence.

Education and Training

cover

Read the
Education and Training
e-edition today

Read Now

Newsletter Sign Up

Most read news

Competitions

If you’re obsessed with Apple or just love a good gadget, this is a prize that will blow you away! An incredible £3,333 to spend on Apple goodies! How would you like to be the proud new owner of the Apple Watch?

As we grow older it becomes more and more important to have means to travel about safely and quickly. Our friendship groups and families grow and the need to have a car that is not only safe but also fast and big enough for all our needs is ever more important. There are many cars on the market for such needs but none deals with them as efficiently or as neatly as a VW Golf Estate. These cars are build strong, long lasting and spacious for a reason. They cater to the needs of many and are some of the most popular cars currently on the market.

Digital Edition

cover

Enjoy the
Islington Gazette
e-edition today

Subscribe

Education and Training

cover

Read the
Education and Training
e-edition today

Read Now