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09 Dec 2021

Executive backs SDLP call for cost of living taskforce 

McLaughlin: "People will be unable to heat their homes and keep the lights on with the winter cold snap starting to arrive"

Sinead McLaughlin

Executive Office Committee chair Sinéad McLaughlin made the proposal at a meeting on Wednesday.

The Assembly’s Execuitve Office Committee has backed a call from the SDLP for the Joint First Ministers to establish a cost of living task force.

Executive Office Committee chair, Sinéad McLaughlin, made the proposal at a meeting on Wednesday.

The committee has agreed to write to the Joint First Ministers calling on the taskforce to be established. 

Foyle MLA, Ms McLaughlin, said: “The cost of living crisis facing people across the North is having a serious impact and we need to take urgent action to allow families to navigate what’s set to be one of the most difficult winters in recent memory.

"I am glad the committee has backed my call for a cost of living taskforce and we need to see the Joint First Ministers move on this as soon as possible, a generic letter of platitudes won’t cut with people who are struggling.

“People here are under pressure on a number of different fronts. We are seeing regular rises in gas and electricity prices that many families simply can’t afford.

"As a result, people will be unable to heat their homes and keep the lights on with the winter cold snap starting to arrive.

"The £20 weekly cut to Universal Credit is also being keenly felt with families having to get by with less thanks to a Tory cut rubber stamped by Sinn Féin Finance Minister, Conor Murphy. 

"National insurance contributions are also set to rise and groceries and essential items are getting more and more expensive.

“All this is taking place while a pandemic still rages on around us. We need innovative ideas and solutions to help our public navigate this difficult period, the SDLP won’t be found wanting to step up and help the people who need it.”

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