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Posted by John King
Many people in Britain are getting into serious debt because the cost of everyday expenses is going up much more quickly than most workers' wages.
Matt Hartley, spokesman at the Consumer Credit Counselling Service (CCCS), said his organisation is currently seeing a lot of struggling families and urged anyone in this position to seek help.
"Earnings are not rising nearly quickly enough to keep up with the rising cost of living, high energy bills, the soaring cost of petrol and other factors," he commented.
A lot of people who have found their finances stretched are likely to have been those who were on low incomes in the first place.
However, it is not just low-earners who have been feeling the pinch. Last month, Unison discovered that some public sector workers have to ration their central heating in cold spells, while FridayFriday.com found one in 14 applicants for payday loans is now a professional in a well-paid job.
Mr Hartley recommended that anyone in real trouble should contact the CCCS, Citizens Advice or National Debtline, while budgeting for things like home heating oil and electricity bills is advisable for people who want to cut back on their outgoings.
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