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Publications

  1. Aoife Deery
    Publication date:
    May 2020

    CAS welcomes the opportunity to respond to this consultation.

    We want to ensure that the Heat Networks (Scotland) Bill delivers the best possible outcomes for heat network consumers, and gives parity with the rights and services afforded to consumers of the regulated energy market. Unfortunately we are aware of instances where heat network consumers have been disadvantaged due to the current unregulated nature of heat networks and are keen that this Bill works towards improving this as much as possible.

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  2. Rebecca King
    Publication date:
    May 2020

    CAS welcomes the opportunity to feed into the work of the Scottish Government's Advisory Group on Economic Recovery. Central to our view of how to stimulate economic growth post-COVID-19 is the principle of protecting household incomes and helping with the cost of living. 

  3. Publication date:
    May 2020

    A report on the activity of the EU Citizens Support Service following its first year in operation.

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  4. Rob Gowans
    Publication date:
    May 2020

    Citizens Advice Scotland (CAS) welcomes the opportunity to provide evidence on the Bill. The Bill provides an opportunity to make minor amendments to address issues which have been identified since the passage of the Social Security (Scotland) Act 2018, including making provision for the introduction of the Scottish Child Payment. CAS welcomes the Bill and is broadly content with its provisions, although there are a number of areas that the Committee may wish to consider in its scrutiny.

  5. Gail Walker
    Publication date:
    May 2020

    CAS welcomes the opportunity to respond to the Commission’s proposed measures to provide additional support to non-household organisations impacted by COVID-19. Our response focuses on key principles around stakeholder engagement within the non-household market and on ensuring that measures to support those impacted by COVID-19 are effective for both licenced providers and customers.

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  6. Publication date:
    April 2020

    Technical details:
    • The survey was designed by Mark Diffley Consultancy and Research Ltd
    • Results are based on a survey of 1,050 respondents conducted using the ScotPulse online panel,
    • Fieldwork was conducted between 9th and 12th April 2020
    • Results are weighted to the Scottish population by gender and age

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  7. Mike Holmyard
    Publication date:
    April 2020

    This report looks at whether there is detriment in the PTD market.

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  8. Mike Holmyard and Linda Hutton
    Publication date:
    April 2020

    In this report the Financial Health team explores the current state of play in council debt collection across council tax, rent and water debt and presents a charter for change. 

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  9. The Citizens Advice Scotland network magazine
    Publication date:
    April 2020

    Issue of 3 of the Citizens Advice network in Scotland magazine

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  10. Publication date:
    April 2020

    Throughout March 2020, the Scottish Citizens Advice network saw substantial changes in the types of advice sought and the ways people accessed that advice as a result of the coronavirus outbreak.

  11. Work and Pensions Committee inquiry
    Rob Gowans
    Publication date:
    April 2020

    The DWP’s response to the Coronavirus outbreak has included many welcome changes, benefiting those making a social security claims for the first time, but also those who were already supported by the UK’s safety net. Many issues that social security recipients are still facing in accessing support are similar to the issues CAB clients told us about before the outbreak. Our recommendations aim to help DWP address these issues and are based on quantitative and qualitative data from CAB all over Scotland. 

  12. Markets Team
    Publication date:
    April 2020

    CAS welcomes the ambition of the Scottish Government to bring every owner-occupied home in Scotland to Energy Performance Certificate (EPC) band C. This will not only increase the energy efficiency of Scotland’s housing stock, but also reduce carbon emissions and alleviate fuel poverty. We believe a warm, dry, energy efficient home that is affordable to heat should be the standard in Scotland, not a privilege.

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  13. Publication date:
    April 2020

    The survey was commissioned by CAS and carried out and designed by Mark Diffley Consultancy and Research Ltd.

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  14. Citizens Advice Scotland
    Publication date:
    April 2020

    In its response to the Scottish Government's principles of charging for investment period 2021-27, Citizens Advice Scotland has called on the Scottish Government:

    • To commit to the principle of affordable charges for all
    • For responsive, robust and sustainable affordability policy that adequately protects low income households
    • To ensure debt recovery achieves a balance between revenue collection and consumer protection as part of Scottish Water's developing ethical framework and its work with local authorities
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  15. Kyle Scott and Greg Thomas
    Publication date:
    April 2020
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  16. Supporting individuals and communities using private water supplies to make informed treatment choices'
    Citizens Advice Scotland
    Publication date:
    April 2020

    Scotland is one of the first nations to sign up to the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). SDG 6.1 specifically targets “universal and equitable access to safe and affordable drinking water for all”. Scotland has a significant challenge in achieving this goal by 2030 for more than 190,000 people who are not served by the public supply.

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  17. Citizens Advice Scotland
    Publication date:
    March 2020

    196,000 people in Scotland are not connected to the public water supply, and rely on a private supply for drinking water. Water quality in private supplies can be poor. Those responsible for the supply must cover the full burden and cost of ensuring that they are treated, monitored, and maintained correctly. The majority of private supplies are rural or remote rural.

  18. Publication date:
    February 2020
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  19. Publication date:
    February 2020

    Fairer pricing, clear and accurate billing and better support for people in vulnerable situations are at the heart of Citizen Advice Scotland’s (CAS) priorities for the energy market in Scotland which are summarised in this report. 

    With the retail market facing potential changes in the coming years, with OVO energy’s recent takeover of SSE retail energy business, as well as the Scottish Government’s proposal for a Public Energy Company, the charity has published a report on priorities for customers.

    This report draws upon evidence and insights from our frontline advisers in Citizens Advice Bureaux (CABs) across Scotland and the Extra Help Unit (EHU). It highlights cases from our CABs in six thematic areas which are crucial to consumers.

    CAS six key consumer priorities are: 

    • Fair pricing and debt support; so customers aren't shocked by sudden increases in costs and the ability to pay is central to any debt repayment scheme.
    • Ease of contact; so customers aren’t left in the dark or hanging on the phone about their service or bills
    • Clear and accurate billing; to allow customers to understand how charges have been calculated, and to stop people accruing debt through no fault of their own
    • Easy access to the Warm Home Discount; to help more people with the cost of energy
    • Better support for vulnerable consumers; particularly accurate meter reads to prevent bill shocks
    • Offering choice for consumers on restricted electricity meters; to challenge fuel poverty for consumers off the gas grid

    The report also summarises a review undertaken for CAS around consumer engagement in the energy market in Scotland and makes a number of recommendations on how fuel poor households may be supported. This review is available on request. 

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  20. Debbie Horne
    Publication date:
    February 2020

    Citizens Advice Scotland (CAS) believe the Universal Credit (UC) system must change if the benefit is to work for citizens across Scotland and the rest of the UK. CAS has consistently sought to work with the government to address the problematic aspects of the UC system. In this Budget submission, CAS sets out two policy recommendations that would improve UC for people in-work.

    Citizens Advice Bureaux (CAB) data, including Citizen Alerts (cases from local CAB), have shown clear issues for people who are working and on UC. Particularly, that people are often working and living with an income that is too low to meet the cost of living. Ensuring that UC makes work pay was central to the original policy aims of UC. However, this is not the reality for people who are working, are on UC and are finding themselves accessing CAB for financial advice.

    To improve UC for people in-work, CAS calls on the government to announce two key changes in the forthcoming Budget:

    1.   Introduce a Work Allowance for all claimants

    2.   Reduce the Taper Rate to allow workers to keep more of what they earn

     

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