Town hall chiefs in St Helens have been praised for a campaign to help residents living in fuel poverty.
National Energy Action's (NEA's) Warm Homes Campaign highlights that around four million UK households are still unable to access equal life chances because they live in a cold, damp home.
The charity is warning that a baby born today and living in cold housing is more than twice as likely to suffer from breathing problems including asthma and bronchitis and three times as likely to suffer from wheezing and respiratory illness.
As the baby grows up in the same housing conditions chances of suffering mental health problems are higher – one in four adolescents living in a cold home are at risk of multiple mental health problems and evidence proves that living in fuel poverty impacts on educational attainment.
St Helens Council is showing good practice to NEA's vision that ‘no one is living in fuel poverty’ after being highly rated in the NEA’s recent ‘Get Warm Soon ‘report.’
The report assesses how many health and wellbeing boards in England are including public health indicators on fuel poverty,
with St Helens rated five stars out of a possible six.
Coun Richard McCauley, St Helens Council's Cabinet Member for Public Health and Wellbeing, said: “There are excellent examples of good practice locally that demonstrate how St Helens' health and wellbeing board and St Helens Council are tackling the health inequalities of living in cold homes.
“The St Helens Winter Warmer campaign will again assist many households stay warm and well this winter.”
To tackle fuel poverty and reduce excess winter deaths, St Helens Council and local partners undertake a Winter Warmer campaign to inform residents on the best ways to stay warm and well over winter, while saving money and becoming more energy efficient.
Thousands of free winter warmer packs containing advice and information on how to stay warm and well throughout the winter months, as well as practical items including hats and gloves, have been handed out in libraries to St Helens’ more vulnerable residents this winter.
Everyone can play a part in trying to be more energy efficient, for more information on what you can do visit: www.sthelens.gov.uk/saveenergy