2.5 million people are facing a financial crisis due to the impacts of coronavirus. The number of people whose income has been affected negatively by coronavirus in severe problem debt has nearly doubled since the beginning of the outbreak to 1.2 million people.
Research from the debt charity StepChange found that the number of those affected who have fallen behind on essentials or borrowed to make ends meet has increased from 4.6 to 5.6 million.
The charity estimate that the amount of arrears and borrowing among this group attributable to the impact of coronavirus is £10.3 billion and they add that One in three of those affected has borrowed to make ends meet, which may delay problems now but increases the likelihood of more severe debt problems later.
Phil Andrew, the charity’s chief executive, said:
“This report paints a picture of a nation sleepwalking into a debt crisis. Despite a bold initial reaction to the pandemic, the government and financial services sector’s toolkit of responses has not evolved, and the result is a spiralling number of people being plunged into debt due to Covid-19. And the worst is yet to come.”