Citizens Advice offering support to St Albans residents hit by soaring cost-of-living
- Credit: Archant
As residents grapple with the cost-of-living crisis, St Albans Citizens Advice is experiencing record-breaking demand for its services.
In particular, it is experiencing very significant increases in the need for energy advice.
June Chapman, Chief Executive of Citizens Advice in St Albans explained the predicament: “The government did the right thing to strengthen support for lower income households earlier this year, but with energy prices set to rise to almost £3,000 in October the crisis is very far from over.
"Locally, many people continue to struggle and further pressure will be piled on families through the winter months.”
Research firm Cornwall Insight has suggested the energy price cap could reach a staggering £3,615 a year from January, an increase on last month's estimate of £3,363.
Coupled with this increase is inflation hitting a 40-year high of 9.1 per cent, with record prices for petrol and the soaring cost of food hitting people in their pockets.
St Albans Citizens Advice is adapting its service to provide more support on the issues people are struggling with the most. It has specialist energy advisers available to meet increasing demand for advice on energy bills.
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It has advisers who help people maximise their income by ensuring they get all the help they are entitled to, including welfare payments and support with energy bills.
And it has recently started offering an advice service in local food banks in partnership with The Trussell Trust. This offers comprehensive support to people struggling to afford basic essentials.
June's advice for people who are struggling is: “As a first port of call, visit our website, where we have lots of information on what to do if you’re struggling to pay bills or are wondering if you’re getting all the benefits you’re entitled to.
"If you feel you need further help, our trained advisers can also provide personalised support. There are details of how to get in touch are on the website (citizensadvicestalbans.org.uk) or we can be contacted on 01727 811118.”