Friday 1 February 2019
Our call for an independent consumer champion for the mobile and broadband industries was highlighted by the BBC.
12 million mobile customers wasting £63 a year on a service they won’t use
Mirror Online, 31/01/2019, Emma Munbodh
Citizens Advice is calling for an independent consumer champion for the mobile and broadband industries to stand up to practices that exploit customers.
Gillian Guy said: “Mobile companies should be doing more to help their customers save on data they don’t use…This is another example of mobile companies overcharging their customers. It’s time for a consumer champion to stand up for people and push for change on issues like this.”
This story was also broadcast on TalkRadio, 5Live, and BBC Radio Wales.
Council Tax debt
Victoria Derbyshire, 30/01/2019, (34 mins)
Joe Lane, Principal Policy Manager, revealed that more than 90,000 people had visited Citizens Advice about Council Tax arrears in the last year, explaining that it’s the most common debt problem people come to Citizens Advice for.
He continued that councils are turning to bailiffs to recoup arrears, which adds additional fees to people’s debt, he explained that this makes “more difficult to get back on track.”
Fees Ban ‘should be just the start of more power for tenants’
Letting Agent Today, 28/01/2019, Graham Norwood
Citizens Advice responds to the Tenant Fees Bill, which last week passed its final stage in Parliament before Royal Assent.
In a statement Gillian Guy called it a “landmark moment.” She continued: “We look forward to working with the government to do even more to strengthen the hand of the growing number of renters in a market where they have little bargaining power.”
Grandad’s benefits struggle parallels ‘I, Daniel Blake’ film
Lancashire Times, 23/01/2019, Amy Farnworth
Grandfather, Jeff Hayward, died in June having spent 18 months fighting a decision that he was fit to work. Citizens Advice Ribble Valley helped his family overturn the decision.
Manager of Ribble Valley CAB, Katy Marshall, said: “Based on the same medical evidence provided to [DWP] by his GP two years and three months earlier, they found he was entitled to the highest rate of benefit…For him to go from zero points to 15, which is the highest number of points on the benefit scale seems ridiculous.”
Universal Credit: Harrogate residents “carrying cost” of new benefits
Yorkshire Post, 25/01/2019, Alexander Beard
Two and a half years after the full roll-out Universal Credit in the area Edward Pickering, CEO of the Citizens Advice, Craven and Harrogate District, said that residents continue to face problems.
He said that “those who are already on Universal Credit are still carrying the debt caused by the earlier problems, they haven’t been compensated for the, then, huge cost of ringing the helpline to sort DWP mistakes or the extra week with no money.”
In other news
UK house prices grow fastest in north of England and Midlands.
The family accused of antisocial behaviour while on their holiday to New Zealand have returned home. They claim they will seek advice from “Citizens Advice people and the human rights people.”
Austerity cuts have fallen hardest on deprived communities in the north of England.