Increase funding to Eden Citizens Advice Bureau to protect opening times.
  • Petitioned Eden District Council

This petition was delivered to:

Eden District Council

Increase funding to Eden Citizens Advice Bureau to protect opening times.

    1. Bruce Wylie
    2. Petition by

      Bruce Wylie

      Penrith, United Kingdom

EDEN CITIZENS ADVICE BUREAU – A GUIDE TO WHO WE ARE, WHAT WE DO, WHY WE MATTER, OUR SERVICES AND THE CURRENT FUNDING CRISIS

Eden CAB provides free, independent, impartial, confidential information and advice services to anyone regardless of their personal circumstances.  Advice is available on debt, housing, employment, welfare benefits, including tax credits, consumer issues, family/relationship matters, discrimination & immigration and anything else an individual asks.  We achieve very high standards.

The generalist advice service is the essential foundation of all the other work we do. It is delivered by a volunteer team supervised by staff.  The annual value of voluntary work is estimated at £54k.  The general advice service is critically dependent on cash funding of £20k pa and rent/rate relief from Eden District Council (EDC). Taken together with other modest income, this does not cover the total costs of the service, currently ~£57k.

We have survived by maximising savings and drawing on reserves, which no longer meet the recommended 6 months of expenditure.  The general advice service has been in deficit by £18k on average for the last three years.

We have been seeking a figure of £25k as a one-off adjustment from EDC.  Now Eden Local Area Committee of Cumbria County Council has generously provided a one-of grant of £18k to cover the next 18 months.  This should secure the present service through to March 2014  and buys precious time for the newly merged "Carlisle & Eden Districts CAB" to negotiate a service level agreement with EDC based on increased funding to stabilise the service in Eden over the next 2-3 years.

Whilst other funders may be willing to support the CAB, our major funder EDC will have to increase its core funding if we are to avoid continued annual deficits.   If it fails to do so, we will face the same funding crisis in 12 months time.  Based on past years, up to 1000 people per annum could then lose out, no longer getting the support they need.

If you share our concerns, please sign this petition.  You can also help by:

1) Writing to your local councillor asking them to give serious consideration to an increase in funding.  You can find your councillor at www.eden.gov.uk/democracy/councillors-for-eden-district/

2) Seeking support for more funding from Rory Stewart MP at the House of Commons, London SW1A 0AA or rory.stewart.mp@parliament.uk

Thank you.

Peter Cartmell, Julian Davey, Liz Dovaston, Jocelyn Emsley, Sally Firth, Audrey Huddleston, Ian Murray, Linda Overy, Christine Peak, Caroline Richardson, Judith Roberts, Peter Shearer, Kate Tomkinson, Rosemary Turner , Gilly Unwin, Pat Verity, Bruce Wylie

Eden Citizens Advice Bureau volunteers

To:
Eden District Council
We the undersigned wish to express our full support for the work of Eden Citizens Advice Bureau and call on Eden District Council to increase its level of funding in order to preserve the current three days per week opening times.

Sincerely,
[Your name]

Recent signatures

    News

    1. Cash lifeline reprieve for CAB service

      Bruce Wylie
      Petition Organizer

      Many of you will have seen this article in the Cumberland & Westmorland Herald announcing Cumbria County Council's generous one-of grant of £18k to support the CAB service in Eden. The key word in the headline is "reprieve", in this case meaning a "postponement of punishment" rather than a "cancellation". Without increased core funding year-on-year of £18k, we will be back in the same position in 12 months. Other organisations may help but as our major core funder, EDC will have to contribute more than it currently does. Our petition remains valid and is still open for signature. Please pass this message on to others who you think may sign here - http://www.change.org/en-GB/petitions/eden-district-council-increase-funding-to-eden-citizens-advice-bureau-to-protect-opening-times

      Thank you

    2. Eden Local Area Committee agrees funding to help CAB

      Bruce Wylie
      Petition Organizer

      Eden Local Area Committee of Cumbria County Council met on Wed 12th Sep and agreed a grant of £18k to assist the CAB in Eden maintain its general advice service at 3 days per week through until March 2014. This is an important step forward in our campaign for extra funding but is not enough to secure the service in the medium to long-term. Other partners may come forward but Eden District Council's role remains vital. They are our core funder but cut funding by £2.5k this year after funding had remained static for the previous 7 years. EDC must play a role in the medium to long-term by increasing their funding, linked to a service-level agreement over 2-3 years. Only this step will resolve the current funding crisis.

    3. Reached 250 signatures
    4. Rory Stewart MP calls meeting of Eden CAB funders

      Bruce Wylie
      Petition Organizer

      Rory Stewart MP has called a meeting of Eden CAB's key funders & partner organisations to discuss whether a solution can be found to the funding crisis. The meeting will take place on Friday 7th Sep & is an important moment in our campaign to protect our general advice service. There are some promising signs that one key funder is prepared to help over the short & medium term. The bad news is that so far Eden District Council has made no indication that they may be prepared to consider increasing their support. Please ask your friends & family to sign the petition & help us reach our goal. Simply copy this text including the following web link & paste into an email to your friends.

      http://www.change.org/en-GB/petitions/eden-district-council-increase-funding-to-eden-citizens-advice-bureau-to-protect-opening-times

      Thanks

    5. Rory Stewart MP pledges support for Eden CAB

      Bruce Wylie
      Petition Organizer

      Rory Stewart MP has pledged his support for Eden CAB to prevent a reduction in opening hours

    6. Eden CAB volunteers appeal to local political parties for help

      Bruce Wylie
      Petition Organizer

      Eden and Carlisle Citizens Advice Bureaux will soon merge and as the deadline approaches, Eden CAB volunteers have appealed to local politicians and party members to support their campaign to protect Eden CAB's general advice service. From July 1st, the two bureaux will be under joint management and a joint board of trustees. The merger will make some modest savings but volunteers say that the bulk have already been made, when Eden and Barrow CABs began sharing a bureau manager 2 years ago.

      Volunteers hope that every party & each political group on Eden District Council will adopt a supportive stance. They say thay whatever the position of different parties on the various aspects of welfare and legal aid reform, every party has a moral duty to ensure that help is available to those who need it as the consequences of change work through.

    7. Cumberland & Westmorland Herald gets it right

      Bruce Wylie
      Petition Organizer

      Unlike the BBC, the Herald gets to the heart of the matter. The merger will not prevent a reduction from 3 days to 1 day per week of the general advice service, unless we can find an additional £25k pa, on top of the £20k that EDC currently provides. Cllr Gordon Nicholson, EDC's leader has said that the support EDC gives to the CAB is £34k pa but that includes free rent and rate relief of £14k. That £14k is really valuable but it's not cash and we cannot spend it on supervisory staff time for the volunteer team, their training, electricity & ICT. Without the extra £25k cash, the general advice service will be cut by 2/3.

    8. BBC News Cumbria covers merger

      Bruce Wylie
      Petition Organizer

      Shame that this barely touches on the real threat of a reduction this year from 3 days to 1 day of general advice per week unless we can raise an additional £25k. Keep signing the petiition.

    9. Eden CAB Board of Trustees votes for merger with Carlisle CAB

      Bruce Wylie
      Petition Organizer

      The merger will now go ahead as planned on July 1st making further savings but this is not sufficient to secure 3 days per week of generalist advice this year and in future years. We need a further £25k pa to secure the 3 days per week, as a minimum in the short term. Now we have a clear target and the Board of the merged Carlisle and Eden District CAB will be developing a detailed business plan for the next 3-4 years to put to major funders, including Eden District Council.

    10. Reached 100 signatures
    11. News & Star brief coverage

      Bruce Wylie
      Petition Organizer

      More media work to come ....

    12. Reached 50 signatures
    13. Carlisle CAB EGM votes for merger with Eden CAB

      Bruce Wylie
      Petition Organizer

      As Carlisle CAB EGM has voted for the merger, it only remains for Eden CAB EGM to agree at its meeting at 4pm Wed 30th May (at the CAB, 2 Sandgate, Penrith) for it to go ahead. However, this is not enough to stop a reduction from 3 days to 1 day per week opening in the longer term. To prevent this, Eden District Council must increase its core funding. Keep those signatures coming by inviting all your friends. Thanks

    14. Reached 10 signatures

    Supporters

    Reasons for signing

    • vivien knowles PENRITH, CUMBRIA, VIRGIN ISLANDS, BRITISH
      • almost 2 years ago

      Have used & found helpful. Needed by those without expertise & with modest income.Please note Virgin Isles above is a mistake!

      REPORT THIS COMMENT:
    • Tisch Adams LANGWATHBY, PENRITH, UNITED KINGDOM
      • about 2 years ago

      This is the first place I would go to for advice, and I recommend it to others in need of suport. Do not cut this vital service.

      REPORT THIS COMMENT:
    • Janice Shaw KIRKBY STEPHEN, UNITED KINGDOM
      • about 2 years ago

      As newcomers to the county, I find it reassuring to know there is some place I can go when I don't know where to start in finding an answer to a problem. CAB was invaluable to a friend of mine who had been illegally discharged from her dishwashing job. My friend was so frightened to do anything about it at all, but CAB staff guided her through the process, and successfully got her compensation - which fed and sheltered her for several months, til she was able to find part-time work. She is limited by health and learning issues, so needed this help absolutely. And she is only one small case!

      REPORT THIS COMMENT:
    • Kathleen Doidge-Harrison LITTLE SALKELD, UNITED KINGDOM
      • about 2 years ago

      It is very important to have a local service rather than having to travel to seek advice as many people cannot afford to do so

      REPORT THIS COMMENT:
    • Wendy Lawson PENRITH, UNITED KINGDOM
      • about 2 years ago

      A vital service in these difficult times

      REPORT THIS COMMENT:

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