Residents leading the fight against poverty and unemployment in Hammersmith & Fulham

A new resident-led commission has been launched by Hammersmith & Fulham Council to identify and tackle the causes of poverty and long-term unemployment, and it is looking for residents and local businesses to take part.

Poverty is a serious issue in the borough – latest figures show 22 per cent of the population is classed as living in some of the UK’s most deprived areas.

As a result, H&F Council’s new Poverty and Worklessness Commission will see residents, the council and others working together to find long-lasting solutions. It will be led by longstanding local resident and former civil servant Christina Smyth – and she needs your help.

“We’re determined to tackle poverty and long-term unemployment locally and get to the root of the causes stopping people from taking on rewarding work.” said Cllr Sue Fennimore, H&F Cabinet Member for Social Inclusion.

“I’m delighted Christina has agreed to lead this commission and have no doubt she and her team will make a vital difference to our understanding of these complex issues.”

Now, the commission is keen to hear from residents and local businesses with experience in the following issues:

  • business resilience
  • skills employers need
  • particular groups of people less likely to get jobs or start their own business
  • mental health as it affects poverty and/or worklessness
  • poverty as it affects older people
  • housing costs

The commission will sit for about twelve months but will require just a few days’ work over that time from those interested in joining it. It will issue a number of calls for written evidence and invite witnesses to give further evidence at a series of public hearings.

All contributions, large or small, are welcome. If you are interested in taking part in the Commission, please send your contact details and a brief summary of your experience and knowledge in this area to Tom Conniffe, the commission’s programme manager at Hammersmith & Fulham Council, by Monday 29 February.

Email or write to him at Room 139, Hammersmith Town Hall, King Street, London W6 9JU.