A DECISION is expected next week on how £11.39m in DWP cost of living cash should be spent in Bradford to support those on low incomes.

Bradford Council will receive the money in a Household Support Fund grant for 2023/24 in order to help Bradfordians in need over the winter.

A previous round of the grant saw those on Council Tax reduction due to low income receive a £65 payment plus £20 per child in December – a welcome boost amid the cost of living crisis.

But this time, Council bosses are being advised to offer a larger payment at £110 per household, along with £25 per child.

If agreed at a meeting of the Council’s decision-making executive on April 4, the payment can be expected in December this year.

How will the DWP Household Support Fund grant be spent in Bradford this year?

A report to the meeting outlines how £5.24m of the overall Government grant would be spent in this way – a direct payment to support low-income households with the cost of energy and food over winter.

In addition, a further £3.2m would be allocated towards voluntary and community organisations with a focus on food provision.

This would see help provided in the form of healthy food hampers to vulnerable and disadvantaged families in need.

Bradford Telegraph and Argus: A direct payment of £110 could be coming to low income households in Bradford this winterA direct payment of £110 could be coming to low income households in Bradford this winter (Image: Newsquest)

A new scheme for this year would support foster carers in the district with fuel costs, allowing Bradford’s 550 such families to receive two £300 direct payments.

The remainder would be spent in the following ways:

  • additional support for foodbanks - £0.8m
  • the Welcoming Spaces and Warm Spaces initiative - £0.46m
  • smaller schemes for specific groups at risk of poverty - £1.26

The report states in relation to the Household Support Grant: “A fourth tranche of this national grant was announced in late 2022, with grant conditions for councils published in February 2023.

“It is proposed to continue with the successful schemes that have demonstrated impact in Bradford District thus far – and introduce a new targeted scheme for foster carers.

“This £11.39m grant (similar funding as received previously) is for a 12-month period rather than two 6-month periods, so it is proposed to provide ONE larger direct payment to low-income households in December 2023 to assist with food and fuel costs over winter.”

As last time, residents would not need to apply in order to receive the payment. Those that pay their Council Tax by direct debit would receive a payment into the same bank account. Others would be sent a voucher that can be exchanged at the Pose Office for cash.