Guest Articles

The following articles have appeared in recent newsletters and are written by members of GMPA’s network and the wider community across the UK.

Families are only halfway through a two-year cost-of-living squeeze

Britain is in the midst of a living standards disaster. Inflation reached its highest level in 41 years in 2022 – and remains at double-digit levels. Pay packets are shrinking rapidly in real terms. The Government has stepped in with a package of cost of living support that is set to cost £58 billion over the course of this year (2022-23). But even that isn’t enough to prevent typical household incomes from falling by 3%. Read more.

Tameside Council’s voluntary adoption of Socioeconomic duty

Tameside Council has become the latest local authority in Greater Manchester to voluntarily adopt the Socioeconomic Duty, giving us a powerful new tool to understand, address and reduce inequalities in our communities. Read more.

Greater Manchester Fire and Rescue Service urges residents to ‘Stay Fire Safe’ as the cost-of-living increases

As the cost-of-living continues to rise Greater Manchester Fire and Rescue Service (GMFRS) wants to help you to stay fire safe at home. If you’re thinking about doing things differently around the home to bring down the price of your bills, remember to do so safely. Read more.

Odds are: They win. A GM-wide anti-gambling harms campaign

This unique campaign, delivered by the GMCA, is an anti-gambling harms campaign, not an anti-gambling campaign, targeted at the Greater Manchester public across a range of digital and out-of-home channels. Read more.

CSJ Launches inquiry into social housing decarbonisation

The Centre for Social Justice has launched a new research project on the social, economic, and indeed environmental opportunities associated with residential decarbonisation, and the key role social housing plays. Read more.

Yes Manchester

Yes Manchester provides support to people looking for work in North Manchester and helps people to get the skills, experience, and confidence to succeed. They have recently been awarded funding by the National Lottery Community Fund’s (NLCF) Reaching Communities programme. Read more.

How Bad is That?

For several months, Grant visited an inner-city foodbank, drawing and listening to the regulars who rely on the bags of weekly groceries as well as to the local volunteers who run the place. He’s now produced a pop-up exhibition of artworks that is helping to raise much-needed funds for the Coverdale and Newbank Community Grocers in Ardwick. Read more.

Challenge Poverty Week in England and Wales

Are you ready? It’s time to come together with people and groups around Greater Manchester and across the country, for the third Challenge Poverty Week in England and Wales.  Read more.

What can we do about the cost-of-living crisis?

Changing Realities is an opportunity for families struggling and those living on low-incomes to join as a collective voice and advocate for real change. Read more.

School Uniforms costs and support

Bridging the Gap has over the summer provided school uniform support to families across Manchester and Trafford, in the form of school uniform grants and preloved pop-up shops. Read more.  

Loan sharks preying on the vulnerable as cost-of-living soars

Families struggling to cope with the rising cost-of-living are being targeted by predatory loan sharks.

With price increases on everything from fuel to food making it increasingly tough for households to make ends meet, unlicensed lenders are stepping in, offering loans to the desperate at astronomical interest rates. Read more.

Max your Money

The Growth Company, an award-winning social enterprise rooted in Manchester, has launched its Max Your Money campaign to help people boost their income and make their money go further in light of the ongoing cost-of-living crisis. Read more.

In the Red Index

A new tool from Citizens Advice for understanding the cost-of-living crisis. More and more people are coming to Citizens Advice in financial crisis than at any point since the start of the pandemic.

One of the most powerful indicators comes from their debt advice.  Citizens Advice do detailed budgeting exercises with tens of thousands of people every year, trying to help them come up with sustainable ways to get out of problem debt. But for almost half of the people they help, because of the cost-of-living crisis, their advisers now just can’t make the sums add up. Read more.

Manchester Living Rent

Manchester City Council has announced a new rent level called the Manchester Living Rent as a way to make sure more homes are affordable to Manchester people. The Manchester Living Rent (MLR) is a rent level that people on housing benefit can access, meaning new housing – regardless of where it is built – will be affordable to anyone in the city. Read more.

No Interest Loan Scheme

South Manchester Credit Union has been running a proof of concept for the proposed No Interest Loan Scheme (NILS) which aims to provide access to affordable credit for people on low income in England. Read more.

Greater Manchester Pension Top-up Campaign

People in Greater Manchester are being urged to check if they are eligible for pension top up payments after figures revealed approximately 36,000 qualifying households are missing out on around £70m in unclaimed Pension Credit. Read more.

Employment Legal Advice Service

The Growth Company together with Citizens Advice Manchester, Citizens Advice Bury and Bolton and a network of legal partners, have set up Employment Legal Advice – a new service to help individuals across Greater Manchester to access free employment-related legal support. The service is designed to help you access the right advice at the right time as quickly and easily as possible. Read more.

How do we end the need for foodbanks?

In his spring statement, the Chancellor added £500 million to the household support fund, which started out as a pot of money given to councils to support families during the pandemic. This was an insufficient response to the challenges families are facing, given prices are rising at pace and benefits will not increase at the same rate. But what is the role of this type of support? And how should it be delivered? That was what our Ending the need for food banks project set out to answer. Read more.

i3oz9sGuest Articles