On behalf of Citizen’s Advice, ICM Unlimited are carrying out research to understand and monitor the impacts of the coronavirus pandemic on people’s lives, particularly in relation to work and employment, finances and hardships, and access to services.
To this end, ICM recently carried out a large-scale nationally representative quantitative online survey of 6,004 adults (aged 18+) living in the UK.
Startling key findings include that some one in seven (14%) have fallen behind on essential bills – including energy, water, mobile phone and broadband bills, council tax, rent or mortgage payments – the equivalent of seven million people in the UK.
Some people are even more likely to have fallen behind on essential bills or rent:
- A quarter (24%) of people who were furloughed.
- A quarter (26%) of those with children under 18 in their house.
- 28% – twice the UK average – of BAME people. This rises to 31% for Black people.
ICM carried out the survey between 12 November and 25 November 2020, meaning that the entire fieldwork period fell within the ‘second national lockdown’ in England– that is, the fieldwork coincided with the new national restrictions that came into effect on 5 November 2020. It is worth noting that these national restrictions applied to England only, with Scotland, Wales, and Northern Ireland each having their own specific restrictions during this time.