If benefits do not increase in line with inflation, it would mean we will become homeless. I am already in receipt of full housing benefit and I still need to pay extra to the private landlord. I struggle to cover this and energy bills, food and necessities.
It causes me anxiety on a daily basis of losing our home. We have lost 2 homes already in the last 6 years.
The council refused support with discretionary housing payments.
They are not adhering to rules of benefits where disability benefits are not to be taken into consideration when processing applications. Citizens Advice are overwhelmed and have a backlog for support.
I feel I am trying to keep my head above water and it's exhausting.
I get very down at knowing what the Conservatives think of our worth and how we are punished for not bringing in a high wage, and prejudiced for relying on benefits
I don't think benefits will rise in line with inflation. Unfortunately I'm on universal credit personal independent payment ela for my youngest daughter, also carers allowance and they rarely go up and when they do it's just a total of pounds on each.
It would have a massive effect if it doesn't increase slightly because of the cost of living with the gas and electric are now starting to find a pinch with the food bill. It's getting a lot more expensive now. I'm trying to eat more healthily, but unfortunately a bag of fries and chips is a lot cheaper than some fresh vegetables and making a proper meal. So hopefully it does increase and I'm all for you increase with inflation with pensioners, they've worked hard all their lives, they've put the money in, but it would be nice across the board if us disabled were also considered as well.
Feeling very unsupported within the welfare system as a neurodivergent family. No one will recognise that my autism and my husband's ADHD affect our ability to work. Self- employment is work we can do, but not the hours we’re expected so we can’t meet our minimum income floor, and are trying to survive on a monthly UC payment that is less than our rent! But because we fail the extremely narrow (mostly physical) limited capacity to work assessments if we weren’t self-employed we’d be expected to take any job - despite us both knowing that there are aspects of most jobs that we literally can’t do, or that would make us ill. The system is broken.
I want to start by saying that I’m managing, that I’m not broken, but, that I know I can’t keep things going as the situation stands, without significant impacts.
That’s what I want to speak about, the impact of poverty on my physical and mental health. How, if I track my life from 2019 to now, I can see just how messed up things have become.
It wouldn’t matter how much money I had right now in a way, the damage is done.
Poverty, slowly but steadily, removes your true voice. It takes away the strength to fight, to believe that we are worthy.
Over time, our friends have stopped asking us to attend events, stopped inviting us to places because we cannot afford to join them. Our circle has reduced so much and as a single parent to a child with additional needs, that has slowly destroyed my sense of self worth and my ability to get out and try to enjoy life.
My body ‘feels’ broken. I am experiencing a very difficult menopause and despite multiple attempts to garner healthcare support, I am unable to due to a family history of cancer. I’ve given up asking. So I just suffer and I don’t use that word lightly.
I can’t properly care for myself any longer, and that is so very sad to me. I gave up smoking and drinking alcohol, I tried to eat healthily but it’s so expensive now.
I recently had a minor accident and really hurt my foot. I absorbed the pain and carried on because there is only me to take care of things. I found out from my doctor when I could finally get in, that I have a suspected hairline fracture on my foot. I’ve just carried on, because although rationally I know I need to rest, realistically, I can’t. I can’t afford to get help to do jobs in my home and I have no one to help with my son.
I absorb the pain and I think well this is all you can do, but it makes me so so sad that I even matter so little to myself now.
I am not the person I was in September 2019. When I finally had help with my son, I had a part time job, I had possibilities and a bit of hope. I was building back up after difficult times and honestly thought we can do this, things will get better, they haven’t.
Recently, my stepfather died and the devastating effects of that have hit me hard. I come from a fractured family and have no support at all from them. They hid his death and I found out by accident. I cannot tell you how that felt and as I add that to the mountain of suffocating beliefs that I don’t deserve better, I know that getting out of this dark place has become something I just cannot see.
Whilst I keep telling myself you aren’t broken, the reality is a very different story…
I’m trying hard to keep the faith and I support others through voluntary work and a listening ear, so it isn’t over, yet.
I wanted so much more for my son, how sad that so much greed and apathy to the lives of people on low incomes has rendered any dreams that I had, void.
I do think that we have survived a lot, and maybe we can get through. But the crisis in the actual ‘cost’ of living this way is far from over for so many of us.
Is the cost of living crisis over? I think that it is no longer a crisis, as that implies something short term and accidental. It is more of a manmade disease than a crisis. I think what we are experiencing now are the very intentional consequences of policy decisions which reward the rich and further penalise the poor. Coupled with the deliberate hostility towards anyone who has to rely on social security and the punishingly low rates of Universal Credit and disability benefits. I think in the UK today we are experiencing Capitalism at its most extreme as part of the Conservative's fascist regime. The rich get richer, the poor get poorer and success is determined solely by how much wealth can be accrued, regardless of the cost to the health, wellbeing, happiness or future of people or our planet.
The way I see it, the cost of living crisis is DEFINITELY NOT OVER, nor looks likely to be over in the coming months or years.
I believe the ongoing cost of living crisis is pushing up prices in every sector of the economy and the country as a whole is still suffering.
Around where we live petrol costs have crept back up again. (Were down to £1.35 p/l now back at £1.52). An average weekly food shop for 1 adult /1 child is coming in around double what we were paying back in early 2022. We've basically quit buying anything other than what meals we might like a few days at a time to avoid throwing away food that perishes easily. So no choice with fresh fruits or veg, dairy produce or fancy extras like dips desserts or pre prepared salad items. Even supermarket pizza is around £6 upwards. That's a pizza meant for 1 person by the way - at home.
We ate takeaway last week. I was shocked it came to £20 two meals. I had chicken cashew nut with fried rice, the sauce was watered down, the meal was full of large watery onion & green peppers with about 5 half cashew nuts in the entire serving?! Seems to me everywhere is feeling the pinch!?
I've had car insurance renewal up over £100 on last year's price which is an outrageous amount to have to pay. Thankfully I've shopped around to find cheaper but not easy to do.
Nothing is any cheaper. Quarterly water rates jumped up by £30 earlier this year!!!? Not just a few extra pound.
Obviously I've also seen an increase in energy bills over the last few months.
There's no increase in my payments to account for the extra costs. In fact it's been both in the news and social media that the government are looking to cut benefits for those with long term health conditions. I am livid with their measures. I jump through enough hoops to take their rigged tests already! If I could work I would. I loved my old job.
I have basically gone without so much of this last year just to afford to cover the day to day bills. I've been wearing old bikini tops as I haven't been able to afford new underwear as it's no longer fitting or falling apart. Does nothing for your self esteem at a medical appointment to not have clean well fitting underwear.
Once upon a time I could take my two youngest shopping and tell them, "no problem! We can afford the luxury products", at the supermarket!!! We didn't have to worry about the bank balance or the account having enough in it to cover meals out when I couldn't face shopping /cooking, or the cinema to cheer up up/end of the week treats, etc.
So in my view, no it hasn't gone away. The cost of living crisis is still very much alive and kicking and here to stay by the looks of things. 😤
I am unable to plan for the future as my daughter with autism is 17 and she doesn't tick the boxes of the education or employment systems. Her support network pulled out after lockdowns and I'm left to care for her 24/7.
I have letters from DWP for reviews on disability benefits. The anxiety I go through when these letters come, is off the scale. How can I prove her and mine care needs? What if the benefits are reduced or withdrawn?
I'm muddling through paying rent and bills.
Citizens advice are overwhelmed and unable to see me for another 2 weeks to support me with review forms, past the date I need to supply the information.
For the last 5 years we have lived in 3 private rent homes. I have experienced the rug pulled from under us by landlords selling up or housing benefit cuts. Anxiety is now the norm. I'm heavily medicated with anti depressants. Constantly checking my bank acct. I've cut down our Sky package, and only pay rent, council tax and energy bills.
The atmosphere in the house is tense as my daughter is immature for her age and demands what I cannot give her. I'm mentally exhausted, worrying
Yeah, I struggle as well. Planning for the future, I'm lucky enough I'm in social housing, so I'm not affected by the mortgage rates going up or down, which is kind of a good thing, I guess, for me, although I would rather be a homeowner. But planning for the future I find very difficult. I'm disabled on benefits and just being able to save and stuff with all the bills I'm accumulating and the cost of living is a bit of a struggle right now.
One of the often overlooked aspect of poverty, relative to the UK I mean as that's my area of experience, is the home. Council houses are great for not being on the street, and safer by far than private renting, but so hard to get into. I've moved home, the floors cos over £600 quid and that is an absolute steal! And I'm lucky. I took out a loan to pay for them and other furniture items cos my council consider a fridge freezer, washer, sofa, bed and either wardrobe or drawers, essential, the rest of the stuff needed is up to me.
I'm also super lucky that I had a housing support worker from a local charity who could advocate for me and make sure I got the washer which wasn't guaranteed as new home is within walking distance, for a person without mobility issues, of a laundrette. She fought for me and I got granted a washer. She also sorted new bills out for me and saved me the stress that is dealing with energy providers while stressed by moving. She got that sorted and set up for me, as well and updating my benefits and council tax. I've had more support from her in one week than I got for two years with the last supposed support service I had access too. It's a joke.
Feeling really annoyed. Really struggling with my health this week.
Typically, disabled people receive additional money to help cover the extra costs they encounter due to poor health conditions.
Some of this extra money would normally go towards the cost of paying for home grocery shopping delivery.
Over the last 18 months I've noticed the cost of delivery charges increase dramatically. From free slots at less popular times to £7 or £8 during daytime hours.
Call me stubborn, but I begrudge paying these charges. Especially when the products come with an already over inflated price tag by comparison to what is available in store. Even branch to branch there are huge fluctuations in store prices, dependant on geographical location of the store, or whether its classed as a convenience store with longer opening hours. Even then the shelf life of many items tends to be very short, there's no point in picking fresh produce because it's anyone's guess what you might end up with. Items that are substituted, generally with dreadful alternatives.
I've seen our shopping order dwindle in size & content over the span of time we've been stuck with the cost of living crisis shackled to our ankles like a ball and chain.
All in all, I refuse to pay the additional costs these profiteering companies are charging us.
Why is nobody sticking up for the consumer against this blatant theft. It's criminal.
I think I'd be very lucky with school. My daughter, my youngest daughter, is the only one left at school now. The other two have gone off to university and my youngest, H, she goes to a special needs school. And we're very lucky that most of the trips, if they do go anywhere, are fully funded, so we don't have extra the costs as such. So we're very lucky there. But not all parents are in that boat. But there is a discretionary bursary that school can use if people are on a low income, which I have used before, where they will subsidise either all or part of the school trip, which I have done years ago. It's just got to fully apply sometimes and ask for the assistance.
My youngest daughter is now 16, in the past of school holidays, I found her very lonely.
Other children from school we're taken away abroad during Easter, summer and autumn holidays. I couldn't work out how the parents could afford this and have so much time off work considering most workplaces only gave out 28 annual leave per year.
The council would put on free activity holiday clubs at the sports centre. However, the wealthier children who got holidays abroad parents seemed to be quick to book their children into these clubs on a first come first served basis. I was working and unaware of the holiday clubs advertised on social media.
It seemed unfair how some children would be allowed to attend the free holiday clubs and have 3 or 4 holidays abroad per year.
I would take my daughter for walks with our dog. Into the woods or to the beach. As if by magic, as soon as schools broke up for school holidays, the rain poured down for weeks.
On one occasional dry day walking in the woods, my daughter burst into tears and said she loved me but she felt rubbish as other children were away for a 2 week holiday abroad. The guilt would eat away at me.
For the rest of the summer holidays, other children were packed off to grandparents houses to enable the parents to work. When I was working, in holiday time it cost me more in childcare. Even the childminder took 2 weeks off in summer to take her children abroad. I had to revolve around her leave. The childminders children were mean to my daughter. I grudged every penny I handed over to the childminder knowing that I (and tax credits) was supporting her demon children to have a better quality of life than mine.
I offered other parents to look after their children to keep mine company but they had routines and free grandparent childcare, who kept them overnight and took them out for day trips, so they declined. I soon felt not good enough.
As secondary schooling commenced, my daughter's autism traits became evident and she was bullied. 6 months into 1st year of Academy, she never went back. Out of school activities such as dance camps were expensive at £100 for 5 days and tax credits did not consider these clubs as childcare. She was too old to be baby sat yet not emotionally mature to stay home herself so I could work.
All the fun, bonding and memories to be made were not there for us. I felt punished as a single parent who had to work more hours to provide basics of food and rent, whilst wealthier 2 parent families with grandparents for support got it all.