MSPs support the Home Heat Helpline
The Home Heat Helpline is visiting the Scottish Parliament today to inform MSPs about help available to people across Scotland who may be struggling with their energy bills.
The event in Holyrood will provide information about assistance offered by the Helpline - an independent telephone hotline that acts as a one-stop-shop for advice and support, particularly aimed at the elderly and people on low incomes.
Christine McGourty from the Home Heat Helpline welcomes the support of MSPs from all parties:
"The recent cold weather has meant that keeping warm at home is more important than ever. We want to let people know that if they're concerned about their heating bills, then lots of help is available and the Home Heat Helpline is on hand to assist. We're urging anyone on a low income, older people, families with young children and those with long-term health conditions to call the Home Heat Helpline to claim the free help they are entitled to in reducing their bills."
There are some other simple steps people can take in reducing their energy. For example:
turning your thermostat down by 1 degree could cut your heating bills by up to 10 per cent and save you around 100 a year.
- turn radiators down in rooms which you only use occasionally
- switch your lights off when you're not using them
- turn appliances like TVs and phone chargers off at the wall rather than leaving them on standby when they're not being used
- replace normal light bulbs with energy efficient ones
- regularly defrost your freezer to make sure it's operating at full efficiency
- draw curtains over windows at night to provide insulation for the room
- move furniture away from radiators and heaters to allow heat to circulate around the room
Home Heat Helpline: 0800 33 66 99 or www.homeheathelpline.org.uk.
Notes to editors
For further information please contact Louis Blake - 0207 747 2941
The Home Heat Helpline 0800 33 66 99 is a free, impartial and confidential service that connects people on low incomes or in poor health with financial help and practical advice on managing their energy bills. People can also access the service online by visiting www.homeheathelpline.org.uk.
The Home Heat Helpline can advise people on:
- rebates: money off their energy bills
- how to save energy, including what grants are available for things like insulation and new boilers
- practical advice on energy efficiency at home
- advice on other sources of help (such as debt advice) or benefits
The Helpline is managed by Energy UK and funded by the major energy suppliers. The service is supported by a range of organisations including Age UK; Citizens Advice; National Energy Action; Family Action and Energy Action Scotland.
The industry's disconnection safety net is also in place to ensure that vulnerable customers will not be cut off even if they are unable to pay their bill.
In addition, the Home Heat Helpline is able to direct calls - at no cost to the caller - to a number of specialised services including Warm Front, Consumer Focus, Energy Saving Trust Advice Centres (EST), benefits teams at DWP and Home Improvement Agencies (including Care & Repair).