A single mum has racked up £10,000 in debt due to the cost of living crisis affecting families across the UK.
June Butterworth, 44, had to go from her job as a caregiver, a job she had had all her working life, to a housekeeper working reduced hours in a care home to look after her sick elderly mother .
June, from Lancashire, has racked up massive debt and taken out payday loans for necessities as her bills soar, Lancs Live reports.
Her debt for gas and electricity soared to over £1,000, which meant she had to cancel a direct debit from the company and use payment as you go.
For a mother of two, the sudden rise in the cost of living was like a bombshell.
“When I heard the news that the cost of living was going up, I was shocked,” June said.
“It’s a nightmare to master. How are people supposed to survive? I can’t stop crying because you work your whole life…it’s hard.
“The future looks like bankruptcy and I didn’t think it could happen to me. Even if you go to a debt company, you can still end up bankrupt. It can happen to anyone.”
Most of June’s debt is council tax and as a result she has been threatened with legal costs, and credentials litter her house.
After breaking up with her partner, she had to take time off from work to care for her two young sons, now 26 and 22. Her family helped her look after her children to prevent her debts from piling up.
June works a 32.5 hour week and earns £1,250 before tax each month, and receives a £100 Universal Credit allowance, but after tax and funding necessities she finds she has run out of change spare.
She pays £445 a month in rent and more than £100 a week in groceries to feed herself and her sons – plus gas, electricity and water bills. Even when she worked over 40 hours a week, she still struggled to pay her bills on time.
Her youngest son works part-time, but her eldest has been unemployed since his workplace told him the company could no longer afford to keep employees under the government’s Kickstart program because the minimum wage had increased.
She was forced to make sacrifices in her social life to cope with mounting debts and cut back on sharing taxis and buying clothes.
Every month she pays £195 to Christians Against Poverty (CAP), a debt center she has worked with for a year, to pay off her debts and says they told her it would take around two and a half years to to erase.
However, since his salaries do not match the recent rise in the cost of living, it will take him at least three years to pay them back.
Christians Against Poverty (CAP) Rossendale Debt Center offers a free home debt counseling service for people with unmanageable debt in the BB4 and OL13 postcodes. To contact CAP call 0800 328 0006.
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