One third of households in Scotland suffer from fuel poverty. A shocking statistic for a wealthy country that has an abundance of energy resources. A warm, dry home should be a basic right.
These facts emerged as UNISON Scotland launched its fuel poverty initiative today, with support from Energy Action Scotland. The initiative brings together a range of resources with detailed guidance, so public service workers who address the consequences of fuel poverty in their jobs everyday can take action to improve the lives of the fuel poor.
This initiative is a booklet and website with 25 detailed briefing sheets which will support UNISON members to help others to make the most of the resources available. UNISON members will help those living in fuel poverty get home improvements, cheaper fuel and increase their low incomes by ensuring they claim benefits and tax credits that they are entitled to. It will help the many low paid UNISON members who also suffer from fuel poverty.
Lilian Macer convenor of UNISON Scotland said: “I am delighted to launch this initiative. It won’t eliminate fuel poverty – that requires political action. But it will promote the practical measures that can help minimise the impact of fuel poverty which effects almost a third of our fellow citizens.
“There are three main elements to tackling fuel poverty – the price of fuel, energy efficiency/use and household income. UNISON Scotland campaigns on all of these issues and will continue to urge governments to take action to eliminate fuel poverty. We also recognise that our members can play a practical role in minimising fuel poverty. Also thanks to Energy Action Scotland for their support.”
Notes to editors
UNISON is the largest trade union in Scotland
Our fuel poverty resource for UNISON members is here
Dave Watson, 07958 122409
Danny Phillips, 07944 664 110