Man on full benefit due to a mobility problem is storing food for the winter after not yet receiving the £150 council tax exemption

A man who is on full benefit due to a mobility issue says he is already stocking up on food for the winter, after failing to obtain his £150 council tax exemption. Mark Parker is “worried all the time” because of the rising cost of living crisis, which is affecting millions of homes.

The 56-year-old is also angered by his council’s slowness in seeking exemptions to residents who “need the money most.” Mark, who receives Employment and Support Allowance (ESA) due to a mobility issue , who has left unable to work for more than a year, told mylandan He is so concerned about rising fuel prices that he has already started stockpiling non-perishable food for the winter. She fears she will soon have to choose between “turning on the lights or buying food”.

“When I go to the supermarket now everything is blown up,” Mark said. “My LIDL shop was much bigger than I expected that day, a lot more than it was before. I was really amazed.”

Mark said he is afraid government provisions such as a £150 waiver will not be enough when winter comes around. He is worried that he will find himself cash-strapped to meet the fuel expenses, not the first time. “I don’t want to go back to where I have to choose something to stay warm or eat,” Mark said.

“It’s going to be so bad, I know that,” he said, “all I can think about is buy my shop, but I’m already thinking about cutting back so I have savings and food. Enough for winter.” Mark said he’s cut out all the luxuries, and that every time he shops for food in preparation for winter, he’s already filling his store’s closet with a few extra items.

“It’s like going back to war,” Mark said. “I’m feeling anxious about this all the time,” he said, “I’m having trouble sleeping, because I know it’s coming. I’m really worried because I don’t know how bad it’s going to be. is gonna be or how they’re going to help us a lot.”

Mark said he is particularly concerned as he has yet to receive his £150 council tax rebate, which he has been banking on to ease the financial stress of the past two months. He added that thousands of other residents who pay full council tax have already received their exemptions via direct debit from Lambeth Council, while those with full support are still waiting.

In February, the UK government announced that it would issue a one-time payment of £150 to accountable council tax payers in council tax bands A to D, designed to provide “immediate relief” in the face of rising energy bills. Payment will also be made to the occupants of these properties, which are exempted from council tax like Mark.

Councils were advised by the government to pay the rebate “at the earliest” from April, although they have until September 30 to pay. According to Lambeth Council, the government asked local authorities to focus on direct debit payers in the first round of payments.

Mark says he has now been informed that he will receive a letter with a bar code sometime in June, which he can take to his post office to receive £150 in cash, but he is furious that he should The money is not received immediately, and via direct debit like the other residents of Lambeth.

Mark has not been able to work since a year

“I don’t think they’ve acknowledged that it’s affecting the worst affected,” said Mark, who claims he didn’t say anything about his exemption from Lambeth Council until last Friday (10 June). Not heard, despite repeated attempts to contact him to ask, he continued: “I don’t know if I’m going to get it on time to pay my bills, I owe I’m going or not. I just can’t believe [the council] Any more, I can’t trust them.”

A Lambeth Council spokesman said: “Lambeth Council has paid over £10.8 million in council tax energy rebates to 72,200 households in the borough ahead of the government’s 30 September deadline for the release of this support. Lambeth Council has A £4.3million Cost of Living Crisis Fund has also been earmarked to help those most affected by rising prices.

“In the highlighted case, the resident will soon receive instructions to collect £150 from their nearest post office. To help our residents understand how these payments are being made, we have created a dedicated phoneline, email address And the details have been put on our website.

“Residents who are struggling to pay bills or afford food can make use of Lambeth’s Domestic Assistance Scheme which is open and provides a variety of assistance to those facing hardship as a result of a cost of living crisis. providing assistance.



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