Advice in Scotland 2010/11 is Citizens Advice Scotland’s state of the nation report on the problems that people are experiencing across the country.
Providing new and in depth information on the hundreds of thousands of people in Scotland who use a bureau for advice every year, this report shows the key problems experienced by clients across the country.
2010/11 was a challenging year for people and services in Scotland. The country left one of the deepest recessions of modern times, but falling incomes and high unemployment were harder to leave behind. As a result, thousands of people across Scotland required advice to help them resolve their problems. In fact, citizens advice bureaux helped clients with a record number of issues in 2010/11 – 560,303 new issues or one issue a minute.
This briefing highlights the issues that frontline advisers are dealing with every day across the country. Many of the findings are very concerning. The total number of new issues brought to bureaux rose by almost 15,000, a 3% increase in 2010/11, with benefits, debt, legal and tax issues showing significant increases. Of particular concern is the 33% increase in the number of Employment and Support Allowance (ESA) issues dealt with by bureaux over the year coupled with the huge increase in clients requiring representation by welfare advisers at ESA tribunals.