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Spotlight on: The economy
At a time when Scotland's people are in great need of high quality, free advice and information, the Scottish CAB Service is far from immune to the impact of cuts in government spending and reductions in the funds available from trusts, foundations and other organisations that support the provision of independent advice. Frontline CAB offices are under particular pressure to meet expanding demand with limited - and often dwindling - resources.
30 Jun 2021
by Rory Mair CBE, Chair of Citizens Advice Scotland.
This column was first published in the Herald on 30 June 2021.
19 May 2021
Nearly one in three (29%) small to medium sized enterprises (SMEs) in the UK are concerned about energy prices rising, according to research for Citizens Advice Scotland (CAS).
19 May 2021
by Emily Rice, Senior Policy Officer, CAS Energy team.
This article was first published in the Herald on 19 May 2021, to coincide with the release of our Risky Business report.
Publication date: September 2021
Citizens Advice Scotland (CAS) gathers evidence from the more than 171,000 clients a year supported by our network. Many of the problems faced by our clients are rooted in or linked to their incomes not being enough to meet their needs and live a dignified life. For many people coming to see us they simply do not have enough money to make ends meet: YouGov in May of this year indicated 1 in 7 Scots is struggling on their present income even with the temporary financial support measures put in place as a result of the pandemic. In fact, 56% or half a million pieces of advice provided by our network every year can be attributed to income maximisation. During the pandemic CABs unlocked £147million for people through things like social security payments, employment entitlements and lower bills for utilities. A Minimum Income Guarantee would mean the Citizens Advice network could ensure people have even more security and opportunity.
This evidence base, from over 80 years as Scotland’s largest free, impartial and confidential advice network, gives CAS a unique understanding of the issues that IPPR proposes could be addressed by a Minimum Income Guarantee. In addition, our experience supporting clients over the course of the pandemic shows that even those who were coping before the crisis still found themselves vulnerable if their income dropped or costs went up even slightly.
Publication date: June 2021
The Stronger Communities team has responded to Ofcom's call for inputs on it's review of postal regulation from 2022 onwards.
As the statutory advocate for postal consumers in Scotland, CAS believes that there are particular issues that need to be addressed during the review period that are affecting consumers and SMEs. This includes the affordability of services, the quality of service and the impact of location-based surcharging and refusal to deliver in the parcel market.
Publication date: November 2020
CAS produced this data briefing alongside a policy briefing calling for the £20 a week increase to Universal Credit to be made permanent.
Publication date: June 2020
This submission addresses issues of low pay and employment practices.