Category Archives: Employment

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CAB News 07 December 2018

Friday 07 December 2018

We have published this article after the Money Advice Service published new guidance on the collection of council tax.


Employment rights

Your rights to time off work if you have a childcare emergency this Christmas

The Mirror, 07/12/2018

Our advice on workers’ rights and childcare arrangements in an emergency has been used by the Mirror ahead of Christmas.

Tracey Moss, employment expert at Citizens Advice, said: “In an emergency, you are entitled to take time off to make sure your child is looked after. This is known as dependant leave.

“If your employer won’t give you time off, or has disciplined you for having to look after your child, contact your nearest Citizens Advice for help.”

Best places to work

Third Sector, 05/12/2018

Citizens Advice was included in the top 10 charities to work for by Third Sector.


MAS launches `progressive” council tax recovery guidance

Credit Connect, 05/12/2018

Our response to the Money Advice Service’s guidance on how to collect council tax arrears has been included in Credit Connect’s coverage.

Gillian Guy, Chief Executive of Citizens Advice, said: “Council tax arrears are the most common debt issue we help people with at Citizens Advice. Too often we see the harm that’s caused by the way this debt is collected, including further financial hardship and stress. The pursuit of government debt by authorities has also been criticised by MPs.

“Good collection practices by local authorities can work. By helping those who are struggling to meet their payments, councils can improve their collection rates. While voluntary approaches are welcome, to properly protect people from bad practices the government needs to establish an independent bailiff regulator.”


Impact of universal credit

Stoke Sentinel, 05/12/2018

Biddulph Citizens Advice said it was preparing for an increase in inquiries as Universal Credit is brought to the area.

They said: “We are anticipating that as Universal Credit is rolled out across Biddulph the demand for advice in both welfare benefit and debt will increase, as council tax reduction is not one of the benefits amalgamated into U.C and legacy benefit claimants will be being migrated to a new benefit with new compliance conditions that they have not previously been subjected to.”

Christmas Debt

How to avoid running up a debt this Christmas

This is West Country, 05/12/2018

Citizens Advice Cornwall has released a Christmas list of 12 tips to help people avoid pressure on their household budgets.

Bernie Buck, deputy chief executive at Citizens Advice Cornwall, said: “People can feel an awful lot of pressure on their finances over Christmas. All too often, this gets carried into the new year where they have to play budget catch up.

“But there are some simple and practical steps people can take to guard against a festive debt hangover, including early planning.
“If people are really struggling financially they can speak to one of our advisers face to face, online, or over the phone.”

Online marketplaces

How to avoid running up a debt this Christmas

Thame Gazette, 05/12/2018

Thame Citizens Advice said buyers need to beware as thousands of customers report being ripped off on online marketplaces.

A spokeswoman for Thame Citizens Advice said: “Far too many people are being ripped off on online marketplaces. As part of National Consumer Week we want to make sure customers know what to look out for when making a purchase and their rights if something goes wrong.

“To reduce the risk of being left out-of-pocket it’s a good idea to check the product information on these sites carefully before they make a purchase.”

In other news

O2’s data network was restored this morning after a day-long outage.

The airline regulator has begun enforcement action against Ryanair for refusing to compensate passengers for strike disruption.

A new report from the Joseph Rowntree Foundation says 4 million British workers live in poverty.

The boss of the UK’s largest funeral provider, the Co-Op Group, has admitted the industry has taken advantage of people’s grief in the past.

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CAB News 5 October 2018

Friday 05 October 2018

Our quarterly energy star rating – which ranks energy companies on the quality of their customer service – continues to get picked up by national media.

Elsewhere, our energy team’s victory in the Campaign of the Year category at the Charity Times Awards – for its work on energy networks – was announced.



Smaller and newer energy companies are worst for customer service

Mail Online, 04/10/2018, Angelique Ruzicka

The energy star rating story was picked up by the Mail Online, which revealed Toto Energy was the worst performing firm for customer service, scoring just 1.45 out of 5.

Gillian Guy said: “Too many customers are being let down by firms which aren’t ready or capable of providing a decent level of service. These aren’t small problems.”

Smaller and newer energy companies worst for customer service – Citizens Advice, 04/10/2018

Our star rating is also covered on the ITV news website. The piece includes examples of poor service including our figure that TOTO Energy’s customers spent an average of 23 minutes on hold. Gillian Guy said that these problems “can cost customers money and make people’s lives a misery.”

How workplace sexual harassment is linked to women’s physical health

Stylist Magazine, 04/10/2018, Moya Crockett

Our advice on what to do if you are being sexually harassed at work was featured in an article on Stylist magazine.

The article reported on research that showed a link between women being sexually harassed at work and physical health problems.

Our four-point advice says you should first tell your manager in writing then the HR team or trade union. Keep a diary record of your harassment and, if you think you’ve been the victim of a crime, call the police.

DWP calls in Citizens Advice to aid rollout of Universal Credit to claimants

Independent, 01/10/2018, Ashley Cowburn

The Independent reports on the government’s announcement of £39m in funding for Citizens Advice to provide help to Universal Credit claimants, which references our warnings last year that the benefit was pushing people further into debt. Gillian Guy said that we “welcome the opportunity to provide even more people with the help they need with Universal Credit, and deliver consistent service through the Citizens Advice network.”

McVey hands £39m to Citizens Advice to help Universal Credit claimants

Daily Mail, 02/10/2018, John Steve, p3

Image result for universal credit

The Mail also covers the funding announcement from Esther McVey. GIllian Guy is quoted in the piece saying: “Delivering this service will give us even greater insight into the Universal Credit system. We’ll continue to share our evidence with the Government to help make sure Universal Credit works for everyone.”

Companies targeted for using big data to exploit customers

Financial Times, 0/10/2018, George Parker, p1

Our research is mentioned in the FT this morning as Greg Clarke, the Business Secretary, warns of companies using big data to rip off customers. The minister cited our research, which found that people are overpaying by £4bn a year because of their loyalty, as an example of bad practice.

In other news

Theresa May’s claim of the “end of austerity” has been criticised as “lacking credibility”.

Amazon has announced it will raise wages of its employees to the Living Wage in November.

Low-cost airline Primera Air has collapsed leaving passengers stranded.

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