Support for Macmillan

SIR – I am writing to support Macmillan Cancer Support s campaign to freeze out fuel poverty for cancer patients. Rising fuel prices have affected many of us, but for cancer patients the effects can be even more keenly felt. Spending longer periods at ho

SIR - I am writing to support Macmillan Cancer Support's campaign to freeze out fuel poverty for cancer patients.

Rising fuel prices have affected many of us, but for cancer patients the effects can be even more keenly felt. Spending longer periods at home during recovery is just one of the reasons cancer patients have increased energy needs. Coupled with the effects of the treatment itself this means that cold really is colder with cancer.

In a recent Macmillan survey, two thirds of cancer patients struggling financially said paying fuel bills is their biggest money worry. Cancer patients face higher bills at a time when their income has often decreased, but do not automatically qualify for help. My 35-year-old husband is one of those people and is still recovering from treatment to cancer. I am also registered disabled.

The lack of financial support and understanding in today's financial climate is disgusting. Only last week our landlord, Letchworth Heritage Foundation threatened us with eviction, if we did not pay four months rent arrears in full by Friday. Thanks to members of our family we are able to do that but what about those who cannot. The bullying mentality of the Heritage surely goes against the principles of what Letchworth GC was founded on? The rent arrears have occurred due to my husband's company sick pay ending at short notice and not getting benefits organised in time to cover this period. No one with cancer should be left in the cold this winter because they cannot afford to heat their home. Macmillan is urging the Government to extend the winter fuel payment to cancer patients. This annual payment is currently paid to everyone over 60, but could bring immediate help to cancer patients struggling with additional fuel costs.


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If you are struggling to cope with the financial effects of cancer visit www.macmillan.org.uk or call 0800 500 800 to find out more and get hold of a copy of Macmillan's Help with the cost of cancer booklet and managing fuel costs fact sheet.

LORRAINE McGINLAY

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Letchworth GC

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