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Financial skills needed to help the most vulnerable

The poorest people in Wales are struggling under Westminster Government policies, the Welsh communities & tackling poverty minister Jeff Cuthbert will warn today.

Speaking at a Welsh LGA event, he will outline concerns around welfare reforms and set out the Welsh Government’s strategy to protect the most vulnerable.

Supporting accessible financial services for all communities in Wales, improving access to affordable loans and savings and access to debt advice, as well as boosting financial literacy, could help people to manage their money more effectively.

Cuthbert will say: “At a time when finances are already tight, the UK Government’s Welfare Reforms are hitting those who may already be struggling financially. These changes are having huge economic and social implications. Given this, it is essential that people have the right skills to manage their money.

“This is a critical time for housing and welfare services in Wales. Just as pressures are increasing on our housing stock, UK Government policies are undermining the financial security of our most vulnerable citizens. Economic opportunities are being compromised by the UK Government’s austerity strategy, and the people most affected by unemployment are also having their benefits reduced.

“We are determined to do everything we can to protect vulnerable people from homelessness, although our resources are constrained by UK Government fiscal policy.

“The challenge before us is a stark one from which we cannot hide. Yet we must recognise this as an opportunity which we have a responsibility to take. Now more than ever before we must be clear thinking and bold in making sure we are doing as much as we can to prevent homelessness and other social problems and focusing our resources on that goal.”

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