Spring Budget not enough to end poverty and homelessness

published on 6 Mar 2024

Though the Chancellor’s announcements on benefit loans and debt relief are small steps in the right direction, The Salvation Army warns these are not enough to address the problems that push people into poverty and homelessness.

Lieutenant Colonel Dean Pallant from The Salvation Army said: “If you are worried about losing your home, struggling to find employment or rely on foodbanks to make ends meet, there is very little in this budget to help you. 

“Though today’s Spring Budget means a bit more money in some people’s pockets, it does very little to end the deep-seated poverty, hunger and homelessness that Salvation Army officers are seeing across the country at our food banks, Lifehouses (hostels) and debt services. 

“We are also worried that today’s announcements will lead to cutting back on essential public services, which will remove the safety net for anyone who falls on hard times.  Homelessness services are already in crisis as local authority resources have been severely eroded by rising costs and increased demand. 

“Failing to properly address poverty and homelessness means the human and economic cost will continue to grow, and the effect will be felt by society as a whole. Helping people break free from a never-ending struggle to survive doesn’t just make sense morally, but also economically.”

The Salvation Army is calling for Government action to tackle poverty and homelessness by committing to:

  • Reforming Universal Credit to ensure that the basic rate covers the cost of life’s essentials.
  • Increasing funding for homelessness and rough sleeping services in line with inflation.
  • Sustained investment in housing stock especially social housing.
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