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Category Archives: Consumer Issues

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CAB News 24 September 2021

Friday 24 September 2021

The crisis in the energy market is continuing to dominate the news. We’ve been providing advice to worried customers and calling to stop the cut to Universal Credit as households face a difficult winter.



Gas firms may face windfall tax as energy crisis hits households

The Guardian, 22/09/2021, p1, Jillian Ambrose (also The Times (£), FT (£), Independent, Mirror and more)

Another two energy suppliers collapsed yesterday, affecting almost 1.5 million customers. We issued a statement from our Head of Energy Policy Gillian Cooper: “These latest failures will add to people’s worries at what’s already an extremely unsettling time. Supplier collapses and rocketing energy prices, combined with the looming cut to Universal Credit, are creating huge amounts of uncertainty for millions of people.”

Dame Clare Moriarty was on BBC Radio 4’s Today programme  (listen from 1hr 15 mins) this morning, offering advice for people being moved to new suppliers. Our Head of Future Energy Services, Dhara Vyas, went live on the BBC News channel last night and joined a Sky News panel earlier in the week, answering questions from the public.

LCAs across the country have been getting great media coverage, including Citizens Advice Dorset. Energy Specialist, Laura Wilcox, went on BBC Radio Solent’s drivetime show (listen from 16:38) offering advice on what to do if your energy supplier goes bust.

Universal Credit

Universal Credit cut will see ‘600,000 workers struggling to afford food’

ITV News Online, 23/09/2021, (also Evening Standard, Independent, Mirror and dozens of regional outlets thanks to a PA news wire write up)

Our research looked at the impact of the £20-a-week cut to Universal Credit on working people. It showed 1.5 million would be tipped into hardship with 600,000 unable to afford food and other basic essentials. The story was covered in a wide range of national media. Dame Clare Moriarty said: “With energy bills set to rise and family finances already stretched to the limit, this cut is coming at the worst possible time.”


Will your energy bills rise and why is there a gas shortage?


It was a big day in energy news with multiple suppliers warning they faced going under due to rising costs and gas shortages.

Gillian Cooper, Head of Energy Policy gave advice on what to do if your supplier fails. It was included in the BBC, Metro, Daily Express, and Telegraph.

We warned of a perfect storm coming this winter for households on a low income, our statement urging government to keep the £20 Universal credit increase was included in the Mirror and Independent.

National and a number of local Citizens Advice conducted broadcast interviews offering more information on the issue.

Alex Belsham-Harris Principal Policy Manager spoke to BBC for the 8 o’clock news. He said “don’t panic, you’ll still get your energy supply…take a meter reading and keep up with your bills.”

Rob Palmizi spoke to Newyddion S4C about the implications for Welsh energy customers, and Dame Clare Moriarty spoke on the BBC News at 6 (4 minutes 30 seconds in) to offer advice on what to do if your supplier fails.

On the radio Dhara Vyas Head of Future Energy Services spoke to Radio 4 (8 minutes 30 seconds in) about the implications for low income families and why keeping the £20 increase to Universal Credit was vital. Head of Policy and Campaigns at Citizens Advice Cymru Rhiannon Evans spoke to BBC Radio Wales (1 hour 7 minutes in) saying “the single best thing the government can do to help people is scrap the cut to Universal Credit.”

Citizens Advice Leighton-Linslade spoke to BBC Radio Three Counties (15 minutes 50 seconds) advising what customers should do if their supplier goes bust, and warned about the perfect storm coming as a result of cold weather, the end of the furlough scheme and the cut to Universal Credit.