With winter drawing closer, Independent Lives welcome the steps taken by the government to try and address the cost-of-living crisis with a freeze to the energy price cap, but for disabled people and those who support them to live independently, the measures announced on Thursday 8 September, do not go far enough.
For many disabled people, energy usage isn’t a choice, it’s vital.
If you have lifesaving equipment that constantly needs to remain switched on, or an impairment that worsens in cold weather, your energy usage will be higher.
Gloria, a member of Friends of Independent Lives told us:
‘Other people have to choose between heating and eating. We’re having to choose between heating, eating and care.’
The government has already acknowledged that disabled people are ten percent more likely to have reduced their spending on food and other essentials because of increased living costs.
Next month, even with government support, energy bills will continue to increase, making the choice between heating, eating and care even more fraught.
Disabled people and their carers need targeted support through this winter and into the future that addresses the extra costs they have to face.
If you are struggling with cost of living, then you can contact citizens advice through their nationwide advice line on 0800 144 8848 or by visiting https://www.citizensadvice.org.uk.
To find out more about Friends of Independent Lives, our free membership programme, please visit https://www.independentlives.org/pages/category/friends-of-independent-lives