As the temperature plunges below zero in Devon, leading poverty charity Turn2us is raising concerns that many people in the county are living in cold homes because they struggle to pay their energy bills, with many unaware of the help that is available. Despite 140,950 households in Devon receiving the Winter Fuel Payment to help with the energy costs last Winter, the charity says that many will cut back on heating their home this Winter because they are struggling financially. The charity says that it is crucial that those in Devon who are concerned about their fuel bills receive the support that they are eligible for.
Research by Turn2us found that over half of those surveyed (53%) were not aware that many energy suppliers offer support towards Winter energy bills to certain customers, such as those on low incomes. Similarly, two-thirds (66%) were not aware that some energy suppliers have charitable trusts to help certain customers who are struggling with their energy bills.
Turn2us is a charity that helps people in financial hardship gain access to welfare benefits and charitable grants and is running a No Cold Homes campaign to raise awareness of the different types of support that are available to those in Devon who are struggling with their energy costs
Simon Hopkins, Chief Executive of Turn2us, said: “Our research lays bare the extent to which people are needlessly suffering in cold homes this winter. Over half of people who have come to Turn2us looking for support, people who by definition are already taking that first difficult step and looking for help, do not have any awareness of the support that they can get towards fuel bills. What’s even more concerning is that it is older people and those living with a disability that will be hardest hit.
“Having just had a record breaking cold November, it is absolutely imperative that people are made aware that help is available. That is why we are urging people to check with relatives and neighbours, especially those who are older or living with a disability, so that we can tackle this situation head on.”
You can find out more about the No Cold Homes campaign at www.turn2us.org.uk/About-Us/Our-campaigns/No-Cold-HomesFollow