Councillor to bring forward a proposal for ‘warm banks’ across Derry and Strabane to help those struggling with energy costs

A Derry councilor is set to table a proposal next week to set up heat banks across the district to support people struggling with energy bills this winter.

Arm banks were announced by some UK councils this winter to protect struggling households from skyrocketing heating bills after the energy price ceiling was lifted again in October.

Facilities such as churches, community centers and libraries will be available in these areas to help people stay warm during the colder months.

Aontú Cllr for Ballyarnett Emmet Doyle explained that warm banks are indeed places that citizens can turn to when they run out of energy to heat their homes or are struggling with energy bills.

“They will be launched in areas in England and are features in Canada and Germany.

“I would like the council to facilitate the use of community-owned community centers and all publicly accessible buildings for this purpose.

“I ask that we integrate services that may already be in place, such as homework clubs or cozy clubs for the elderly, and that Translink work with us to ensure people can get to and from warm banks reasonably.”

He will also request that the Council prepare information about any grant, counseling, or assistance programs that are available throughout the district to be available at those locations.

“I was really hoping we would not get to the stage where this measure was necessary but Stormont is now useless to people fighting and a paltry £100 from Westminster for those using oil is a disgrace.” , added Mr. Doyle.

“Many community groups are already doing their best to support people and the council needs to support that through these bodies. Therefore, we will demand that the executive pay for increased heating costs for buildings, not taxpayers.

“90 full paid MLAs at Stormont can’t keep playing the blame game while people freeze and so the council is being forced to step in and I want to make the best use of these resources this winter, especially for families with young children and the elderly, who might have problems.” Councillor to bring forward a proposal for ‘warm banks’ across Derry and Strabane to help those struggling with energy costs

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