Third of disabled people living in cold homes
Scope research finds that many disabled people are struggling with energy costs.
A third of disabled people have cut their energy consumption over the last year to afford their bills, disability charity Scope has said.
A survey of working-age disabled people also found 29 per cent had struggled on costs, and nearly a quarter turned off heating even though the home was cold.
Scope has urged energy firms to help disabled customers manage their spending.
Scope Chief Executive’s comments
Scope Chief Executive Mark Atkinson said: “It’s appalling that in 21st century Britain disabled people have been forced to cut back on heating, wear a coat indoors, skip meals or borrow money as they struggle to cope with their energy bills.
“Disabled people frequently have to use more energy because they can be less mobile, need to regulate their body temperature or have to charge specialist equipment.
“Life costs more if you are disabled. Scope research shows that these costs add up to on average £550 a month, and higher energy bills play a significant part.”
Speaking about the findings, Adam Lake from Turn2us said: “Our research has found that those living with a disability are more likely to cut back on heating their home because of the cost of their energy bills.
“Living in a cold home is terrible for your health, and is likely to exacerbate the health problems of someone with a disability.
“What often makes matters worse is that many of the most vulnerable are not on the lowest tariff on offer from their energy providers, and there is very low awareness of the other support available to those struggling.
“This is why it is so important that those finding it hard to cover the cost of heating their home are made aware of the support that is out there.”