Labour to tackle ‘poverty of opportunity’

Plans to better the life chances of youngsters growing up in ‘poverty of opportunity’, have been announced by Council Leader Cliff Morris.

Additional funding was pledged for the initiative at Bolton Council’s annual budget meeting, Wednesday night.

Cllr Morris said: “Poverty has a real damaging effect on people and families, especially on those children growing up in poverty whose life chances are massively reduced as a result. Poverty isn’t just about a measure of whether you are above or below a particular income level. It’s not simply about a lack of money. It’s also about a lack of opportunity to improve your own circumstances.”

The current anti-poverty strategy was setup by Labour bosses at the Council in 2011, with many of the initiatives hailed as successes, but Cllr Morris told Councillors plans “need to go further.”

Projects include the fuel poverty initiative safe warm and dry; welfare support schemes; ‘The Shop’ on Victoria Square which brings together a range of products and services for people who are financially hard up; and support for community groups addressing food poverty in Bolton.

Cllr Morris added: “This commission will work with a wide range of partners, organisations in Bolton, public agencies, businesses, the voluntary and community sector, to provide better support for people who are struggling.”