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The vulnerable left out in the cold

Lucy McTernan, CEO of Citizens Advice Scotland commenting on the Scottish House Conditions Survey, said in regards to the Fuel Poverty figures:

“These figures are extremely worrying, but sadly not surprising. CAB advisers are dealing with a significant number of clients asking for advice on how to pay huge fuel bills. We published evidence only last year which shows that many CAB clients who are in debt are having to make decisions every day about whether to buy food or turn on their heating.

“These are people in every street, every community and every town in Scotland. The worst affected are those on the lowest incomes, and least able to cope – like pensioners, sick and disabled people.

She added “There are a number of ways to tackle this. In the longer term houses certainly need to be built to a better standard of fuel efficiency, but in the short term, fuel prices need to be controlled and those on the lowest incomes need to be given the help they need to live in the health and dignity they deserve.

“This is 2010 and we are supposedly one of the richest countries in the world; it’s not being over-ambitious to hope that a third of people do not have to suffer a harsh Scottish winter unable to heat their home.”

For more information contact Matt Lancashire on 0131 550 1062