Sent via email

20 January 2020

Dear Chancellor

As you will no doubt be aware, I am deeply concerned about the impact that the rising cost of living is having on people in Barnsley East.

Average pay in Barnsley East is in the lowest 30% in the country and food poverty among both adults and children in my constituency is amongst the worst in the country.

Even small increases in the cost of living have a big impact on many families. But in April, working families in my constituency are due to become £1,200 worse-off overnight, as the Government increases taxation and the energy price cap is raised again.

This does not include the impact of the recent cut to Universal Credit, which hit over 3,500 families in my constituency, the suspension of the pension triple lock, or the previous increase in the price cap.

Rising prices, particularly in energy, are also hitting small businesses hard as they are not protected by the energy price cap and are facing staggering increases in operating costs.

It is clear that urgent steps need to be taken by Government to support my constituents now, and in the months to come.

I am writing to ask you to prevent the cost of living crisis from spiralling even further and to take this opportunity to:

– Remove VAT from domestic energy, to reduce energy bills for families across Barnsley East;
– Increase the Warm Homes Discount, to extend targeted support to those that need it most;
– Support local authorities to help residents insulate their homes and save money on bills, as well as carbon;
– Remove the costs of energy supplier failures from residents’ bills and provide a contingency fund to support energy intensive firms
The people of Barnsley need support to get through this cost of living crisis. I look forward to hearing back from you on the steps that the Government intends to take.

Yours sincerely
Stephanie Peacock MP

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