Energy price hikes will ‘cause people’s deaths’ Liverpool councillor warns

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Families could see their energy bills soar by 54% in April.

Energy price hikes will “be the cause of people’s deaths”, a Liverpool councillor has warned.

Cllr Gerard Woodhouse, who is also a community centre chief in Everton, said the rise in the energy price cap will add to the struggles residents have faced as a result of the coronavirus pandemic.

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The Labour member for County Ward said he already sees families struggling to pay for heating and the consequences of putting them under further financial strain could be fatal.

“There are going to be deaths as a result of this, it’s just unbelievable,” Cllr Woodhouse warned.

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Energy price hikes

It was confirmed last week that from April 1, 22 million households across the UK could see their energy bills soar by an average of £693.

This is an increase of around 54% for people who may already be struggling to keep their heads above water.

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Whats’ been said

Cllr Woodhouse, who is CEO at the L6 Centre on Queens Road, Everton, said the additional pressure on families was “just not right in this world.”

He said: “It’s going to be the cause of people’s deaths.

“People are already worried about this – 95% of the people we support are on payment meters and have to pay before they get their fuel, they aren’t going to manage.

“They are cold and we run a youth club here three nights a week; I know there’s families who have to send their children to bed at 6pm to save on heating.

“That’s just not right in this world.”

Government criticism

Cllr Woodhouse reserved additional criticism for the UK Government, claiming ministers had not had to experience what his residents would face as a result of the price hike.

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He said: “I doubt any of those MPs in their ivory towers have had to use a key and put money on their electric.

“Everyone’s had a really bad two years and this just adds to it.

“Vulnerable people won’t be able to manage, people are in enough debt and the fact that it’s a loan will increase that.

“There are going to be deaths as a result of this, it’s just unbelievable.”

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L6 Centre fundraising

The L6 Centre is continuing to fundraise to support vulnerable residents and children across the area.

A JustGiving page set up almost three years ago has raised more than £30,000 for the centre to provide meals, beds and a foodbank to residents in L6.

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