Join the Socialist Party Join us today!

Printable version Printable version

Facebook   Twitter

Link to this page:

From The Socialist newspaper, 22 February 2007

Living in debt - with no advice

RECENTLY I spoke to someone who wanted to get help and advice over a couple of debt issues, a three-grand student loan and water rates.

Lynn Worthington, Wythenshawe Manchester

They had got a lovely colour leaflet from Manchester city council, about the advice services available to Wythenshawe residents. So they tried the city council telephone advice line, which was busy for hours.

Then next on the list was Wythenshawe legal advice, where they were informed that they would only be able to deal with one debt problem and that would be the water rates debt, as they were too busy. They were told to go to the drop-in centre.

This was madness. Were they expected to wait around to be seen, then when the water rates had been dealt with, go out and wait again?

Next on the list was Wythenshawe Citizens Advice Bureau (CAB). They phoned them and the answering machine said they were not taking appointments. The office was closed. They hold advice services on certain days but only by appointment, no drop-in. There was an email address so they emailed for appointment. It bounced three times.

So they found the Manchester website where you can find an advice appointment anywhere. But there weren't any anywhere for three months. They had the details for Withington CAB, so they emailed them to tell them about the bounced emails. They emailed back saying Wythenshawe CAB was fully booked.

They then spotted another debt phone line. When they eventually got through, they were told there were no appointments for up to two months. The adviser asked what the problem was and gave some advice. She said: "If you want, I can send out a pack so you can do it yourself."

Free legal advice has been stripped bare from Wythenshawe. These are vital services in an area like this, a large working-class estate.

People on low wages and benefits, who rely on these services, are left out in the cold as their debt rises.

Legal and other costs are added to the debt before they can get free legal advice. This causes heartbreak and stress to many families. This is all before the downgrading of Manchester advice services. Rumour has it that the advice line may be axed.

Please send letters of protest against the downgrading and loss of wages for Manchester advice staff to council executive member Basil Curley: [email protected] Please send copies and messages of support to Jim Cessford, UNISON: [email protected]

Donate to the Socialist Party

Finance appeal

The coronavirus crisis has laid bare the class character of society in numerous ways. It is making clear to many that it is the working class that keeps society running, not the CEOs of major corporations.

The results of austerity have been graphically demonstrated as public services strain to cope with the crisis.

The government has now ripped up its 'austerity' mantra and turned to policies that not long ago were denounced as socialist. But after the corona crisis, it will try to make the working class pay for it, by trying to claw back what has been given.

  • The Socialist Party's material is more vital than ever, so we can continue to report from workers who are fighting for better health and safety measures, against layoffs, for adequate staffing levels, etc.
  • When the health crisis subsides, we must be ready for the stormy events ahead and the need to arm workers' movements with a socialist programme - one which puts the health and needs of humanity before the profits of a few.
Inevitably, during the crisis we have not been able to sell the Socialist and raise funds in the ways we normally would.
We therefore urgently appeal to all our viewers to donate to our Fighting Fund.

Please donate here.

All payments are made through a secure server.

My donation


Your message: 


In The Socialist 22 February 2007:

Bush & Blair: Get out of Iraq

Iraq 'surge' doomed to failure

Italy: Thousands march against US military base

Socialist Party Marxist analysis

No to Trident!

North Korea: Talks achieve new accord

Anti-war, anti-nuclear, anti-capitalist? Read the socialist!

Socialist Students

Students can defeat fees

Another profit-making racket

Living in debt - with no advice

Defend further education

Socialist Party Congress

The politics of socialism

Socialist Party news and analysis

Justice for the Shrewsbury pickets

Children at the sharp end of British capitalism

Banking billionaires

Drug companies squeeze profits out of health

Hospitals crisis worsens

Fighting homophobia


Climate change - we have to act now

Socialist Party Marxist analysis

CWI world congress: How will new workers' parties be built?

Workplace news and analysis

Valentine's day protest

Unique Care workers plan more protests

Israeli postal workers storm trade union HQ


Home   |   The Socialist 22 February 2007   |   Join the Socialist Party

Subscribe   |   Donate  

Related links:


triangleGlobal capitalism at most dangerous conjuncture since the 1930s

triangleAct now to cancel Covid crisis rents and debt

triangleLebanon - mass protests cut across sectarian division

triangleNHS debt so high it can't be repaid - so don't pay it!

triangleMass movement topples governor of Puerto Rico


triangleManchester Go North West bus drivers in all-out strike over fire and rehire dispute

triangleRent strikers' victory in student halls

triangleManchester student occupation - end rip-off rent, free education now

triangleSolidarity with Manchester students - fight for democratic control of campus safety


triangleWater shortage warning: nationalise now!

triangleGoing viral: Socialist comments and letters


triangleUnison NEC elections: United left challenge needed to fight slaughter of jobs and services

Reports and campaigns

Reports and campaigns



Getting the Socialist out in lockdown



President of 'big four' Labour-affiliated trade union joins TUSC committee


South Wales

Justice for Moyied Bashir



Tories admit guilt for asylum seeker neglect



London bus dispute against low pay, pay cuts and longer hours


HM Revenue and Customs

HMRC: Divisive pay deal leads to expulsions


Socialist Students

Socialist Students conference - postering



W. Sussex children's centres on the chopping block


British Gas

GMB members continue fight against 'fire and rehire' in British Gas



Liverpool Unite branch supports 'no cuts' budget strategy



Scottish TUSC election campaign launch



Coventry success building subscriptions



Save John Carroll Leisure Centre



Keep the fighting fund rushing in for a TUSC stand in May



Tories target universities in free speech shakedown

triangleMore Reports and campaigns articles...

Join the Socialist Party
Subscribe to Socialist Party publications
Donate to the Socialist Party
Socialist Party Facebook page
Socialist Party on Twitter
Visit us on Youtube



Phone our national office on 020 8988 8777

Email: [email protected]

Locate your nearest Socialist Party branch Text your name and postcode to 07761 818 206

Regional Socialist Party organisers:

Eastern: 079 8202 1969

East Mids: 077 3797 8057

London: 075 4018 9052

North East: 078 4114 4890

North West 079 5437 6096

South West: 077 5979 6478

Southern: 078 3368 1910

Wales: 079 3539 1947

West Mids: 024 7655 5620

Yorkshire: 077 0671 0041



Alphabetical listing

March 2021

February 2021

January 2021