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Publications

  1. The Fraser of Allander Institute
    Publication date:
    November 2014

    In 2012 CAS commissioned the respected Fraser of Allander Institute to report what the economic benefits of advice provided by the Citizens Advice bureaux network in Scotland delivered to the common good of Scotland. The report outlined that the work of bureaux within five advice areas in stopping adverse consequences – additional problems – contribute a total benefit to the common good in Scotland of £166.2 million. This report builds on that work, but is not directly comparable.

  2. Robert McGeachy
    Publication date:
    November 2014

    Citizens Advice Scotland (CAS) is seeking tenders from all interested parties to undertake a review of the Customer Forum for Water. The Customer Forum was established in 2011 to give  customers a say in the process of setting water charges in Scotland. The lifespan of the current Customer Forum is due to come to an end in early 2015, and CAS and our partners are committed to undertake a review of the Forum.

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  3. Keith Dryburgh and Katey Tabner
    Publication date:
    November 2014

    The Armed Services Advice Project (ASAP) was established in 2010 to be a focal point for the Armed Forces Community (AFC) in Scotland for access to advice, information and support, while working closely with key partner organisations to ensure that clients receive the most appropriate support.

    This report provides an update to the findings of the Civvy Street: The New Frontline report which was published in 2012. The report examined the advice needs of members of the Armed Forces Community, looking at whether and how they differed from those of the average citizens advice bureau client. The report found that while the advice needs of veterans did not differ considerably from those of the average client, it was the complexity and severity of these problems that marked them as different.

    Two years on, this report examines whether the recent trends in advice need, such as payday loans and food parcels, have affected veterans and whether their support needs have changed.

  4. Kate Morrison
    Publication date:
    November 2014

    CAS has submitted a response to the Scottish Government's draft Community Energy Policy Statement for public consultation.

    CAS welcomes the potential benefits of community energy and recommend that the Scottish Government applies key consumer principles, which are outlined in our response, to ensure that the benefits of community energy projects are consistent and accessible.

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  5. period 1 October 2013 - 30 September 2014
    Claire Williams
    Publication date:
    November 2014

    The ASAP annual report covers the activity for the year October 2013 to September 2014, highlighting key statistics and providing examples of the work undertaken by the ASAP advisers.

    Over the year we supported 2433 individual clients with 10,635 new and repeat issues. The client financial gain was £1.6M.

  6. Robert McGeachy
    Publication date:
    November 2014

    CAS has submitted a response to the EU’s consultation on policy options to optimise water reuse in the EU. CAS’s response highlights the need to combine regulatory and non-regulatory measures in order to increase levels of water reuse across the EU, including action to raise awareness about the benefits of water reuse.

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  7. Consultation on Tackling Avoidance from Department for Business, Innovation and Skills
    Rob Gowans
    Publication date:
    November 2014

    Based on evidence from bureaux, CAS has consistently raised concerns over misuse of zero hours contracts by employers. The UK Government proposes to ban exclusivity clause in zero hours contracts as part of the Small Business, Enterprise and Employment Bill, and consulted on how avoidance of the ban could be tackled.

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  8. Sarah Beattie-Smith
    Publication date:
    October 2014

    CAS responded to the Scottish Government’s consultation on the Reservoirs (Scotland) Act 2011: Registration, Charging, Risk designation and associated aspects.  CAS generally welcomed the proposals in the consultation which will help to provide communities with greater protection against the risk of flooding from reservoirs. CAS highlighted that would help to protect communities, and minimise the risks of businesses and consumers facing significant remedial and clean-up costs as a result of any damage caused by flooding from reservoirs.

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  9. Citizens Advice Scotland
    Publication date:
    October 2014

    Fairness, Equality, Responsiveness: Citizens Advice Scotland’s Submission to The Smith Commission was submitted in October 2014.

  10. Consultation by the Social Security Advisory Committee
    Rob Gowans
    Publication date:
    October 2014

    CAS commented on a proposal to introduce seven benefit 'waiting days' for new Universal Credit claimants. This follows a recent increase in the number of waiting days from three to seven for JSA and ESA. We drew the SSAC's attention to a number of potential issues, including possible equalities impacts, the impact on housing and rent arrears, on other benefits and on in-work claimants on zero hours contracts.

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  11. Unfair Charges for Parking on Private Land: A Report by Citizens Advice Scotland
    Fraser Sutherland
    Publication date:
    October 2014

    Citizens Advice Bureaux across Scotland have been inundated in the last year with complaints regarding over-zealous parking charges - they are not fines - being handed out by the private parking industry in Scotland.

    This has resulted in demand at the Citizens Advice service in Scotland reaching an unprecedented level – a 50% increase in cases regarding parking this year compared to last. This is an issue that affects everyone, but we are especially worried by cases brought to us by vulnerable Scots including those who are disabled and elderly caught out by poor signage and unfair appeals processes.

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  12. Sarah Beattie-Smith
    Publication date:
    October 2014

     

    CAS has responded to the EU’s consultation on EU drinking water policy. The consultation was launched in response to the European Citizens’ Initiative “Right2Water”. This is the first ever, successful participatory democracy instrument at EU level, and focuses on improving the supply of safe, good quality drinking water across the EU.

     

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  13. House of Commons Public Bill Committee
    Rob Gowans
    Publication date:
    October 2014

    The Small Business, Enterprise and Employment Bill proposes changes on three specific issues of concern to CAS – the misuse of zero hours contracts, the non-payment of Employment Tribunal awards, and workers being paid less than the National Minimum Wage.

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  14. A review of consumer issues brought to the service in 2013/14
    Fraser Sutherland
    Publication date:
    October 2014

    This report provides a snapshot of the issues that are affecting consumers in Scotland, examining both national and local trends. This is based on data provided by citizens advice bureaux in Scotland and data from the Citizens Advice consumer service.

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  15. Sarah Beattie-Smith
    Publication date:
    October 2014

    CAS welcomes the opportunity to respond to the Scottish Water (Objectives: 2015-21) Directions 2014 and Principles of Charging. As the representative body for water consumers in Scotland, CAS is strongly of the view that ‘affordability’ should remain a principle of charging to provide a commitment to work towards water and sewerage charges that are affordable for all consumers.

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  16. Delays and assessments
    Beth Reid
    Publication date:
    October 2014

    Personal Independence Payment (PIP) is a crucial benefit for many sick and disabled people. It is designed to help with the extra costs of being sick or having a disability, such as additional heating, additional travel costs, special diets, or specialist equipment. Its predecessor, Disability Living Allowance (DLA), has often been a mainstay for some of the most vulnerable clients attending citizens advice bureaux (CAB), particularly when there have been administrative problems with income-replacement benefits.

    Scottish bureaux have been supporting clients to claim PIP since the benefit was first introduced in Scotland in June 2013. Since January 2014, the process of PIP reassessment was rolled out to a large swathe of Scotland, amounting to around half of the DLA caseload in Scotland. CAS carried out a survey of bureau advisers in August 20141 to find out the experiences of those making applications for Personal Independent Payment.  This report looks at the feedback from bureaux, clients and advisers.

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  17. Rob Gowans
    Publication date:
    September 2014

    CAS responded to the Low Pay Commission's consultation on what future rates of the National Minimum Wage (NMW) should be set at. Based on bureau evidence showing that workers earning the National Minimum Wage are increasingly struggling to afford essentials, CAS recommends the purpose of the NMW should increasingly focus on tackling low pay and in-work poverty, together with a proactive approach to targeting employers who do not pay their staff the National Minimum Wage.

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  18. Citizens Advice Scotland response
    Fraser Sutherland
    Publication date:
    September 2014

    CAS responds to the CMA's consultation on whether the personal current account market should be investigated.

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  19. CAS submission
    Beth Reid
    Publication date:
    September 2014

    CAS has responded to the Independent Review of Personal Independence Payment. 

    The response, based on case evidence and a survey of advisers in bureaux across Scotland, highlights the severe impact huge delays in PIP assessments are having on claimants.

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  20. Citizens Advice Scotland response
    Fraser Sutherland
    Publication date:
    August 2014

    CAS have responded to the The Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) consultation on plans to introduce a price-cap on high cost short term credit products.

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