Star comment: Intervention needed as consumers feel the pinch

There is undoubtedly much that individuals can do to help alleviate the cost of living crisis. Shopping around is one of them, and customer demand is already doing its job in forcing supermarkets to keep prices low.

People are going into debt to make ends meet
People are going into debt to make ends meet

It is also a time for the likes of Poundland to shine. The innovative store, based in the West Midlands, has always used every ploy in the book to keep prices low and that is now benefitting it as people look for bargains.

The AA also points out that the way we drive dictates how much fuel we have to put in our cars. Maybe it is time for us all to slow down and drive more sensibly, particularly when there are environmental benefits and savings for doing so.

But while all that is sensible advice, ministers cannot deflect their role to ensure families do not dip below the poverty line. The signs are already there that people are going into debt to make ends meet.

Households’ borrowing using consumer credit increased in March at the fastest annual pace since before the UK’s coronavirus lockdowns started.

However, while some were taking on more debt, there were also signs that households were unwilling to touch savings built up during the coronavirus pandemic. Households’ borrowing using consumer credit increased in March at the fastest annual pace since before the UK’s coronavirus lockdowns started. If more intervention is needed by ministers then so be it.

Such recent displays of altruism by the footballer Marcus Rashford or wider society to help Ukrainian refugees show that the public are warm and compassionate. Politicians should be in touch with that mood as they help the most needy.

Local elections will provide a weather vane in the state of our nation. Millions were today going to the polls, including in the West Midlands, parts of Staffordshire and in Powys.

It comes after campaigns fought on local issues, but with issues like the cost of living and Partygate also in people’s minds. Democracy is important, so if you have a vote use it. And, with Ukraine’s plight in mind, we should also celebrate that fact we continue to live in a free and open country. Russia shows us the value of our vote. We are fortunate indeed.

The results will be difficult to decipher. Labour achieved considerable success in 2019, so are defending a high water mark, rather than attacking huge gains. The fate of the Prime Minister may be tied up with the results, though he’s shown himself to be a survivor and is unlikely to be unseated by a poor showing.

Most Read

Most Read

Top Stories

More from the Express & Star

UK & International News