Lancashire petition forces Government climbdown on £3m fund

County Hall, Preston
County Hall, Preston
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A petition launched in Lancashire has forced the Government into an embarrassing climbdown over plans to scrap a £3m fund for the county’s most vulnerable residents.

Labour politicians last month urged the public to add their names to an online call for a rethink over cuts to welfare assistance affecting some of the worst off in society.

County council deputy leader David Borrow also pleaded the case in front of local government minister Kris Hopkins.

This week the campaigners were told they had been successful, with funding being restored - albeit at a reduced rate - for Lancashire’s Care and Urgent Needs Programme which helps residents in extreme curcumstances who need assitance with essentials such as food, bedding and emergency transport costs.

Coun Borrow said: “After five years of Tory-led government we have to be thankful for small mercies like these.

“We have led a vigorous campaign to save welfare assistance funding for Lancashire and in the face of overwhelming opposition the Government has been forced to change its mind and relent on plans to cut vital funds.

“Whilst Lancashire will now receive one of the largest allocations in the country, this will still be 50 per cent down on funding received in the last financial year. When it comes to a programme designed to help the most vulnerable people in times of exceptional crisis this is clearly not good enough.

“For now though we remain extremely grateful to the LEP for helping to publicise the campaign and the people of Lancashire for throwing their support behind it.

“Lancashire spoke with one voice and the result has been a dedicated £1.5m for those who need it most.”