THE message from Barrow Borough Council to those in rent arrears could not be any clearer.

Get help and get it as soon as possible.

It is pleasing to see the council taking a fair approach to arrears, rather than an unforgiving hard line attitude.

Evicting individuals and families for falling behind with the rent, doesn’t solve a thing.

Once the security and shelter of a home is taken away, there’s not much left to keep somebody’s head above water. It doesn’t address anyone crisis, it only deepens it.

No-one wants to see that in Barrow, and it would inevitably heap more pressure on other public and charitable services. What should not go unnoticed is that more than 98 per cent of tenants regularly meet their obligations.

Yet the facts are that not everyone has the financial acumen to have a solid grip on what’s coming and what’s going out. If it’s a choice between food on the table or paying the rent, many in desperate circumstances will opt for the former.

Switching from a weekly payment to a monthly will have caught out many people. Rent arrears, however, cannot rack up indefinitely. The council has laid on services to help those in difficulty and has its own budgets to balance.

Burying your head is never a way of making problems go away.