Concern a rising number of residents in South Holland are struggling with debt problems has prompted a call to the next MP for free debt advice to be made a priority.
Candidates standing for South Holland and The Deepings in May’s General Election are being urged to act by National Debtline, the free advice service run by charity the Money Advice Trust.
A total of 509 calls for help from people in South Holland and The Deepings were received by National Debtline during 2013 and 2014. In addition, the charity’s Business Debtline service, which advises the self-employed and other small business owners, received 27 calls.
With research showing that only 17 per cent of people with unmanageable debt in the UK seek advice, the need for debt help in the district is likely to be far higher.
The Money Advice Trust says that higher awareness of free debt advice in and around South Holland and The Deepings could “mean the difference between financial recovery and financial disaster” for thousands of people.
MPs are often contacted by constituents about unmanageable debt, including problems with credit cards, personal loans, mortgage debts, payday loans, council tax arrears, rent arrears, bailiffs and county court judgments (CCJs).
Joanna Elson OBE, chief executive of the Money Advice Trust, the charity that runs National Debtline and Business Debtline, said: “Whoever is elected as Member of Parliament for South Holland and The Deepings needs to put promoting free debt advice in the area near the top of their to-do list after the General Election.
“While National Debtline has given more than 500 advice sessions to people in South Holland and The Deepings in the last two years, we know that potentially thousands more are suffering in silence.”