Gordon Brown’s call for an emergency cost of living budget gets nearly 50,000 supporters

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Nearly 50,000 people have signed a petition backing former Prime Minister Gordon Brown’s call for an emergency budget to tackle the cost of living crisis

Gordon Brown has called on the Government’s Emergency Response Committee to meet to tackle the cost of living crisis this week.

The former prime minister has called for ‘urgent action’ to cover further rises in fuel bills amid ‘millions of people on the edge of a financial precipice’.

He urged Boris Johnson to unite with Tory leadership candidates Liz Truss and Rishi Sunak to prepare and agree an emergency budget – or face growing pressure to recall Parliament and force them to do so.

Mr Brown wrote: ‘With millions of people on the edge of a financial precipice, we are calling for urgent action to meet the cost of another £1000+ rise in fuel bills on top of the already painful increases of April.

Gordon Brown called for urgent action

Liz Truss and Rishi Sunak are battling to lead the Conservative Party

Liz Truss and Rishi Sunak are battling to lead the Conservative Party

“The current facts are grim: four out of five retirees, four out of five single parents and four out of five large families face energy poverty, that is, when their energy bills represent more than 10% of their weekly income.

“Around 35 million people in 13.5 million households are at risk of energy poverty in October – this is an unprecedented 49.6% of the UK.”

In his article for the Daily Record, he warned that if no action is taken before another price hike in January, the number of people in fuel poverty in the UK could rise to 39million out of 15million of hearths.

Now campaign group 38 Degrees said that within 24 hours of it going live, tens of thousands of people across the UK had signed a petition backing Mr Brown’s appeal.

The petition says, “The government increased Universal Credit during the pandemic – providing a lifeline to millions of people – and with enough pressure they could do it again.”

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The Scot – who was chancellor under Tony Blair before taking over as prime minister in 2007 – has been joined by metro mayors, anti-poverty groups and church leaders across the country in demanding urgent government action on universal credit and family support.

Mr Brown said: ‘People are being asked to bear an unbearable burden of unpayable bills at a time when so many people are under pressure.’

Ellie Gellard, Strategic Director of 38 Degrees, said: “The stories we hear from people across the country could come straight out of a Charles Dickens novel: children who are hungry, mothers who are sick but working three jobs to make ends meet, families facing frost in their own homes.

“Now, with the news that energy bills could soar to £4,000 next year, the panic felt by millions will only get worse.

“While our government is away on its summer break and the candidates vying to be our next Prime Minister are silent. For families on the brink, this silence is deafening.

“Within hours, tens of thousands of members of the British public have backed Gordon Brown’s calls for an emergency budget – and a plan to lower crippling bills and support families, immediately.”

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