Socialists in call to tackle fuel poverty

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MORE than 20,000 households in West Lothian are now living in fuel poverty, a public meeting will hear this week.

Scottish Socialist Party leader Colin Fox said government figures showed the rise in fuel poverty – defined as spending over ten per cent of income on keeping warm – following the recent increases in gas and electricity prices.

He said: “Energy bills have doubled since 2005 but wages, benefits and pensions have not. The average household pays 14 per cent of its income on gas and electricity, making the combined bill around £1300 a year.

“If the big six energy companies will not help those in fuel poverty then the government has a duty to act. The Scottish Government needs to ensure these bills are capped.”

Mr Fox will speak at Bathgate’s New Partnership Centre, South Bridge Street, at 7pm on Wednesday.