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1.8M adults in Scotland have taken a financial hit during the pandemic

CAS Launches 'Debt Happens' campaign.

Over 1.8 million adults in Scotland have seen their finances get worse during the Covid pandemic, according to new analysis from Citizens Advice Scotland (CAS).

Polling for the charity by YouGov found 41 per cent of Scottish adults found their financial position got worse during the pandemic, with 15 per cent saying their position has got a lot worse.

Taking into account Scotland’s adult working age population, this would represent 1.82 million people across the country.

With household budgets set to take a battering in the coming months with rising energy bills and prices in the shops, CAS has today launched a new campaign called Debt Happens.

The campaign seeks to encourage people that they are not alone in facing debt and to get advice from across the Citizens Advice network.

CAS Financial Health spokesperson Myles Fitt said:

“The pandemic created a hugely challenging set of financial circumstances for people and with over 1.8 million adults in Scotland seeing their finances get worse since March 2020.

“Restrictions may be easing, but there will be no let-up in pressure on household budgets, with energy bills soaring and record inflation colliding with flat and falling incomes.

“That all adds up to more and more people being at risk of debt. Our message to people with this new campaign is that debt happens, and you’re not alone. It’s nothing to be ashamed of and the important thing is to seek advice quickly so you get the help and support you need.

“People can get help in a variety of ways across the Citizens Advice network, from local CABs to our online resources like our public advice site and online Money Map tool.

“Some people will benefit from negotiated repayment schemes which brings their monthly payments down, but for many others getting more money in their pockets in the first place will help.

“Our advice is free, impartial and confidential and we’d encourage anyone who would benefit from advice to seek it as soon as possible. Don’t let the bills and the stress pile up, we’re here to help.”




CAS’ ‘Debt Happens’ campaign launches today (7 March) and will encompass campaigning across radio and social media, as well as local campaigning from CABs across Scotland. More information is here

All figures, unless otherwise stated, are from YouGov Plc.  Total sample size was 1001 adults. Fieldwork was undertaken between 10th - 14th February 2022.  The survey was carried out online. The figures have been weighted and are representative of all Scottish adults (aged 18+).

Working age population figures are taken from here.

Please note these calculations to extrapolate the data to general population have been conducted by the CAS team. Margin of error will depend on the size of each groups of interest observed.