Inflation is up to 3.1% for the first time in six years, in a surprise new figure, whilst the unemployment numbers around in Salford and around Greater Manchester have fallen.
Inflation has risen above expected rates, now Governor Mark Carney must write a letter to Phillip Hammond to explain why the rate did not hit the Bank of England’s target by over a single percentage point.
Today, the unemployment figures for around the country were released by the Government. Though the number of people in unemployment dropped in the last quarter by 26,000, there were also 56,000 fewer people in work.
Shorter UK jobs numbers: those with jobs are getting poorer at a slightly slower rate than those without, and now there are 56,000 more of the latter
— WorldFirst (@World_First) December 13, 2017
Wage growth remains below price growth, so in whilst employment is growing, real wages are still falling.
— Ed Conway (@EdConwaySky) December 13, 2017
Manchester charity CSIN (Community Social Inclusion Network) is helping people manage their money with schemes including Money Matters events, covering a range of problems including overdraft management, the cost of credit and dealing with debt collectors, free to all Salford residents.
CEO Joe Barnwell spoke to Quays News:
“There’s enough children in poverty in the area to fill three high schools. Salford is one of the most impoverished areas of the country, particularly in Swinton and around that area. There is a lot of poverty and a lot of gang crime there. Still lots of the old fashion ways and the money lenders. There are a lot of people who won’t understand what inflation going up means. It doesn’t make any sense to them because they’re not financially literate.”
Barnwell described people hiding away from facing their debt problems, seeing them as a “crisis situation.”
“Rather than service their debt or look to solve the problem, they bury themselves away hoping it’s going to stop – and it’s not.”
CSIN, then, helps to educate people about their financial situation.
“We like to educate people on how they get into debt, what to do when you are in debt, looking and credit unions where you can borrow sensibly. Then we deal with bailiffs banging on the door, money lenders and debt collectors. We point people in the right direction.”
Barnwell hit back at financial government figures describing a country on the up.
“Some people’s everyday life may be just spent servicing debt, making ends meet from day to day. Some people don’t know what they’re going to eat tomorrow. Tell them it’s 3 point whatever percent inflation – it doesn’t mean anything.”
“Education is the key. If you educate people you help them help themselves. You get them towards a pathway to employment.”
In real terms, the Brexit process has impacted people’s finances in many ways.
It’s led to an unstable pound and thought to be the reason behind the rise in inflation, as well as seeing the cost of a weekly food shop go up.
This means more people are turning to food banks, with nearly 80,000 more emergancy packages given out by the Trussell Trust this year, compared to 2015-16.
In the Trussell Trust’s stats, released in April, Salford was seventh in Greater Manchester for foodbank usage, behind Oldham, Rochdale and others. All over Greater Manchester, families were given 58,792 emergency food supplies.