News | Heading shines a light on fuel poverty

Heading shines a light on fuel poverty

SDLP Councillor Brian Heading has successfully requested that Belfast City Hall be lit up red and purple to mark Fuel Poverty Day on Friday 15 February 2019.

Cllr Heading said: 

"This is an awareness raising exercise, one that I hope will raise the issue of fuel poverty across Belfast. 

"Northern Ireland has some of the highest rates of fuel poverty in western Europe- with many families having to choose between heating and eating. In 2018, that it totally unacceptable. This is yet another knock-on affect from the absence of the Stormont institutions, which has delayed positive changes to the Affordable Warmth Scheme being implemented. 

"The changes to the Affordable Warmth Scheme would make a tangible difference to the lives of those living in fuel poverty by increasing the eligibility threshold, as well as the proposal to remove PIP, Attendance Allowance and Carer’s Allowance from the ‘calculation of income’ from the scheme. Though far from a panacea, this would go a long way to heating homes more affordably.

"It is farcical that when we hear about the abuse of the Renewable Heating Scheme by some of the highest earners, some of our poorest households are going without heat during the winter months."

Cllr Brian Heading

07854 365833

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