Help create A Fairer Future for people facing poverty

3 December 2021

A ten-year strategy to tackle financial hardship and poverty in Cheshire West and Chester is being developed by the Council and residents can help shape it before it is launched in the Spring.

People with lived experience of poverty, Community Inspirers, have been working with the Council and local partners in the last four years to address poverty and identify its root causes.

They have been sharing their personal stories with borough leaders to give them the knowledge and understanding to make the right decisions when it comes to issues related to poverty.

However, with thousands facing poverty and the pandemic having a disproportionate impact on disadvantaged communities, even more needs to be done to tackle this issue in the years to come.  This strategy will provide the framework for a renewed approach, learning from the lessons and insights of the pandemic.

The Council’s new ten-year strategy, ‘A Fairer Future’, is in its early stages of development and is being led by our Leader’s Champion for Poverty and Inequality, Cllr Mandy Clare and co-created with local partners and our Community Inspirers, backed up by evidence and best practice.  

Before it is presented to Cabinet in Spring 2022, the Council is inviting residents and partners to share their insight, so the final strategy is most effective.

Councillor Louise Gittins, Leader of Cheshire West and Chester Council and Cabinet Member for Poverty and Wellbeing, said: “The Council declared a Poverty Emergency in October 2020. Poverty affects many people in our society. This is not how it should be. The Council and the community will continue to strive to do better to help those living among us who are facing these struggles."

“Our Community Inspirers have been a valuable addition to the workings our council, with their knowledge and experience shaping the decisions we make."

“We now wish to broaden that engagement to a wider group of residents and partners. We want to hear their ideas on what we should include in this strategy, which will be finalised towards the end of the financial year and considered by Cabinet."

“‘A Fairer Future’ will connect with existing Council plans and policies including Stronger Futures, the Climate Emergency Plan and the Inclusive Economy Strategy, which is currently being developed.”  

Residents are invited to share their views on the Participate Now website at: www.cheshirewestandchester.gov.uk/fairerfuture
There is a questionnaire, quick polls and the opportunity to offer valuable insight by commenting on certain ‘lived experience scenarios.’ 

As an alternative to taking part online, write to: ‘A Fairer Future’, Insight and Intelligence, Cheshire West and Chester Council, Council Offices, 4 Civic Way, Ellesmere Port, CH65 0BE.

Email westcheshire.povertytruth@cheshirewestandchester.gov.uk or telephone the Council’s Contact Centre on 0300 123 8 123 and quote ‘A Fairer Future’.

Councillor Mandy Clare, Leaders Champion for Poverty and Inequality, said: “We recognise that whilst we have all weathered the same storm, we have not all been in the same boat.  Now is the right time to innovate in how we approach the issue of poverty, working with a wider range of multi-agency partners and people with lived experience of poverty to really challenge ourselves to create a fairer borough."

“We want to hear from people across our community so that the strategy is the best it can be. It is a quick and easy process to take part at cheshirewestandchester.gov.uk/fairerfuture. People who are not online can also get involved by phone or letter.”

Residents have until 9 January to take part, when all feedback will be analysed to help shape the strategy and action plan, which will be available for residents to view. 

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