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Closed petition Give Animal Rescue Centres a grant to offset this winters increased heating cost

We would respectfully ask the Government to give urgently needed help with the anticipated massive increase in heating costs for this Winter to small and medium sized Animal Rescue Centres who are unable to absorb these costs.

More details

Animal Rescue Centres are already facing immense pressure from an unprecedented Post-Covid influx of unwanted animals alongside a drop, in many cases one third or more, of their donated income.

Because of these competing pressures of demand for their services and drop in income to provide those services many Rescues could, without this help, cease to exist thus causing an explosion of homeless and/or ill treated animals roaming our streets

A LITTLE HELP NOW COULD PREVENT THIS TRAGEDY HAPPENING.

This petition is closed All petitions run for 6 months

11,138 signatures

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100,000

Government responded

This response was given on 18 April 2023

Businesses and charities are currently being supported by the Energy Bill Relief Scheme. The Government is not currently considering targeted additional support for rescue centres’ heating costs.

Read the response in full

The Government is actively considering the impact of the rise of cost of living on all aspects of people’s lives and businesses, including the costs associated with animal welfare. Defra remains in close contact with animal welfare organisations and meets them regularly to understand issues that are affecting the sector, including any increased burden on animal rescue centres.

Businesses and charities are currently being supported by the Energy Bill Relief Scheme (EBRS). The details of the EBRS were announced on 21 September 2022. The scheme will run for six months covering energy use from 1 October 2022 until 31 March 2023. The scheme applies to all non-domestic energy customers, including businesses and charities involved with companion animal welfare that are on eligible contracts. More information can be found here: (https://www.gov.uk/guidance/energy-bill-relief-scheme-help-for-businesses-and-other-non-domestic-customers)

The Government has announced a new Energy Bills Discount Scheme (EBDS) from 1 April 2023 to 31 March 2024 for eligible non-domestic consumers in Great Britain and Northern Ireland. The current EBRS support has protected the sector during the highest price rises of Winter 2022/23 and the EBDS support will continue to provide some support for rescue centres with their energy costs. While there are no plans to extend this support further than announced, the Government will continue to monitor energy prices closely over the coming months to ensure that support offered remains both effective and proportionate.

Sector groups are closely monitoring the impact of the cost-of-living crisis and identifying where more support may be needed. We welcome the support they are providing owners through pet food banks and financial support with veterinary treatment during these difficult times.

Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs

This is a revised response. The Petitions Committee requested a response which more directly addressed the request of the petition. You can find the original response towards the bottom of the petition page (https://petition.parliament.uk/petitions/622806)

Overdue revised Government response to petition chased by MPs

The Petitions Committee, the group of MPs who consider parliamentary petitions, has written to the Secretary of State for Environment Food and Rural Affairs, Thérèse Coffey MP, about the overdue Government response to this petition.

In the letter, the Chair of the Petitions Committee Catherine McKinnell MP asks the Government to provide the revised response to the petition and an explanation for the delay responding by Thursday 13 April.

Government departments are meant to submit responses to petitions, including revised responses, within 21 days. A revised response to this petition was first requested by the Committee on 17 January 2023, but the Government has not yet provided this.

Because this revised response to this petition is now several weeks overdue, the Committee has written to the Government asking them to explain the delay, and to provide their revised response to this petition.

In the letter, Catherine McKinnell highlights how important it is that Government departments provide a prompt response that directly addresses the request of a petition, when this receives over 10,000 signatures.

We will share the Government's explanation for the delay, and their revised response, with you when we receive this.

Original Government response

The Government is actively considering the impact of the rise of cost of living on animal welfare. Businesses and charities are being supported by the Energy Bill Relief Scheme until 31 March 2023.

The Government is actively considering the impact of the rise of cost of living on all aspects of people’s lives and businesses, including the costs associated with animal welfare. Defra remains in close contact with animal welfare organisations and meets them regularly to understand issues that are affecting the sector, including any increased burden on animal rescue centres.

The details of the Energy Bill Relief Scheme were announced on 21st September 2022. The scheme will initially run for six months covering energy use from 1st October 2022 until 31st March 2023. The scheme applies to all non-domestic energy customers, including businesses and charities involved with companion animal welfare that are on eligible contracts.

To support households, HM Government’s Energy Price Guarantee will reduce the unit cost of electricity and gas so that a typical household in Great Britain will save around £700 this Winter, based on what energy prices would have been under the current price cap - reducing bills by roughly a third. The scheme will run from 1st October to 31st March, with a Treasury- led review underway to consider more targeted support after this period.

Sector groups are closely monitoring the impact of the cost-of-living crisis and identifying where more support may be needed. We welcome the support they are providing owners through pet food banks and financial support with veterinary treatment during these difficult times.

Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs

This response was given on 12 January 2023. The Petitions Committee then requested a revised response, that more directly addressed the request of the petition.

Government Minister explains delay in providing a revised response to the petition you signed

The Minister for Biosecurity, Marine and Rural Affairs, Lord Benyon, has responded to the Petitions Committee's request for an explanation for the delay in providing a revised response to the petition you signed.

The Minister said:

"In recent months, Defra has been responding to a large volume of e-petitions, as well as a backlog of correspondence. The Department continues to review its processes and endeavours to provide on-time responses to e-petitions in the future."