CALDERDALE’S Anti-Poverty Partnership has received backing to continue its work for another year.

The council’s Cabinet gave the partnership the thumbs up this week, acknowledging tackling poverty was a complex issue and they were in it for the long haul using the Anti-Poverty Strategy approved a year ago.

Members were also monitoring the strategy’s progress, as well as renewing its backing for the partnership.

Cabinet member for Public Services and Communities, Coun Susan Press (Lab, Todmorden) said that, like the council’s moves to tackle obesity, there was a lot more work to be done.

After nine years of austerity the picture was not a particularly great one, she said.

But in the light of £114 million worth of cuts the council had had to find over the last decade, the authority was doing its best to counter some of its effects, for example investing in advice around welfare reform and being committed to removing inequality across the borough.

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Anyone at any time could suddenly find themselves struggling financially, councillors heard.

The ambitious strategy has three key themes – prevention, intervention and resilience – and strategy action points which run across the council aim to address issues through all its directorates.

Successes over the year included increased take-up of the council’s Affordable Warmth Scheme to more than 200 residents during the last year, compared to 37 the previous year, helping people to keep their homes warm.

Another was the Holiday Kitchen scheme which ran in a central Halifax ward in the summer, which was recently considered by Calderdale Children and Young People’s Scrutiny Board.

The board, having heard about the success of a summer Holiday Kitchen scheme, urged the council to give more support the successful YMCA school uniforms recycling scheme by working with schools to influence school uniform policies that supported the authority’s anti-poverty work.

They had heard schools often chopped and changed with uniform designs or requirements, making recycling them to families which could use them more difficult.

Cabinet member for Children and Young People’s Services, Coun Adam Wilkinson (Lab, Sowerby Bridge) told Cabinet: “It is said some schools are changing uniforms frequently and un-necessarily. Can we ask officers to examine how extensive the true problem is?”

Council Leader Coun Tim Swift (Lab, Town) said it was worrying how unthinking actions could sometimes effect families that were struggling.

In the year ahead councillors were told measures to help improve people’s lives will include work to ensure private landlords provide good-quality accommodation, an autumn and winter campaign to raise awareness of how the council is supporting rough sleepers and people who beg – including extended opening times at the borough’s Winter Shelter – and jointly developing a Good Employers Charter with local employers to recognise those who pay the Living Wage, recruit local apprentices and offer in-work training and career progression.