Failure to help people through cost of living crisis would be morally unforgivable, says Honeyford

A range of measures could be taken in the near future to help people navigate the ongoing cost of living crisis, Alliance Assembly candidate David Honeyford has said.

Lagan Valley candidate Councillor Honeyford said failure to help people get through the crisis would not only be morally unforgivable but would result in further wider economic consequences in future.

Alliance has proposed a series of measures in its upcoming manifesto, including the introduction of a child payment scheme, rolling out a home heating support grant voucher scheme, bringing home heating oil within the remit of the Utility Regulator, reviewing the Executive’s capacity to utilise further borrowing powers and retrofitting homes for renewable energy sources and insulation.

“The ongoing cost of living crisis means many homes are already struggling to make ends meet, with inflation continuing to erode the value of wages and benefits,” said Councillor Honeyford.

“We have a moral obligation to provide assistance to those in poverty, which is a situation made worse by the cost of living crisis. Failure to do so would also result in further economic consequences down the line. Poverty levels and inequality in our society would increase, curtailing consumer spending, meaning more jobs being put at risk and living standards further reducing.

“In the long-term, we must mitigate cost of living pressures through job creation, productivity improvements, wage growth and more sustainable energy sources. However, we can also help people more immediately with Alliance’s proposals.

“The recent Russian invasion of Ukraine will exacerbate rising energy and food costs. Urgent action is required to protect the most vulnerable people in our community to prevent lasting social and economic damage.”