Letters: Number of Scots households in fuel poverty is chilling

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The current cold snap serves to chillingly remind us how much we all rely on adequate supplies of heating in our homes.

This is no time to be without gas and electricity and yet the cost of such essential supplies has doubled in the past five years.

Unfortunately people’s wages, pensions and benefits have not kept pace.

As a result one in three households in Scotland is, according to Scottish Government figures, now living in fuel poverty.

This appalling circumstance has been aggravated by Government decisions to cut the winter fuel allowance and slash grants for energy efficiency improvements.

I have been overwhelmed by the public’s response to a Scottish Socialist Party petition calling for prices to be reduced and Government cuts reversed.

The 5 per cent fall in gas bills announced in December has had next to no effect on the levels of fuel poverty and that’s because it followed a 19 per cent rise in gas and electricity bills in October.

Colin Fox, Scottish Socialist Party, Alloway Loan, Edinburgh

I say ‘boo’ to the rugby fans’ jeers

THE bad-natured booing on Saturday at Murrayfield when either side stepped up to kick a penalty or convert a try (in England’s case) was deeply disappointing.

One hoped that this sort of behaviour was a thing of the past and no more in future please.

Alex Orr, Leamington Terrace, Edinburgh

Holyrood failures want our support

OUR jolly old governing body at Holyrood, which has so far failed to prevent sectarian warfare at football matches, stop Orangemen parading their message of hate through our streets, dual the A9 to our northernmost city or rid the country of nuclear weapons, among other failures ... is about to ask for our authority to run our country as an independent nation. Ah.

David Fiddimore, Nether Craigwell, Calton Road, Edinburgh

Limited benefits to Scots industry

RE the supply of foreign steel for the new Forth crossing (News, February 2). It will be interesting to hear the First Minister’s comments on this.

Not so long ago we were hearing how great the benefits would be to Scottish business from the construction of this bridge.

As well as the steel coming from abroad, I’m sure the workforce will as well.

R Jenkins, Edinburgh

Would holidays be banned too?

I SEE Norman Bonney is back with another secular bee in his secular bonnet (News, February 4).

He wants all religious “observance” such as assemblies hosted by chaplains and the celebration of “religious festivals” banned.

I feel sure that most of your readers are savvy enough to know that the teaching of Christianity is positive and beneficial, whereas atheism is the very opposite.

Indeed, I would blame the latter on many of the ills prevailing in our society today.

For example, the hordes of people who ran amok, looting and burning in England last August were not Christians taught to follow the teaching of Jesus who declared the greatest commandment to be: “You shall love the Lord your God . . and your neighbour as yourself.”

If the National Secular Society were to succeed in having banned “the celebration of religious festivals” there would be no Easter or Christmas holidays.

The NSS will not approve of the motto of Edinburgh: Nisi Dominus Frustra (Except the Lord in vain, Psalm 127).

Donald Jack, Summerside Place, Leith

Members need not be atheists

ALTHOUGH many members of the National Secular Society are atheists, that is not a membership qualification.

The NSS merely campaigns from a non-religious perspective for the separation of religion and state (some members may be believers).

Describing them as ‘secularists’ would be more accurate.

Steuart Campbell, Dovecot Loan, Edinburgh