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New research: the impact of cost of living rises on people on the lowest incomes

21st September 2022

New research from The Trussell Trust highlights the devastating impact the cost of living crisis is having on people forced to survive on the lowest incomes, alongside action that the UK Government should take to support households on the lowest incomes this winter and beyond.

This research found more than two million people (40% of people claiming Universal Credit (UC)) had skipped meals across the previous three months to keep up with other essential costs.

  • 38% of people in receipt of UC said they’d gone a whole day with no food at all, or just one meal, in the last month because there wasn’t enough money for food, compared to 11% in the general population
  • 34% have fallen into debt because they couldn’t keep up with essential bills (e.g. rent or utilities). One in five (19%) people in receipt of UC are currently behind on their energy bills, 12% are currently behind on paying their Council Tax, 12% are behind on paying their water bills and 12% are behind on their rent or mortgage.
  • 23% have been unable to travel to work or essential appointments (e.g. GP, school run, dentists or hospital appointments) because they couldn’t afford to use public transport or the fuel costs to get there.
  • The Trussell Trust have made a number of recommendations to government, but in the meantime, our services are more important than ever

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