EAST Staffordshire Borough Council has revealed its plan of action as it looks to tackle fuel poverty in the borough.
The council is set to roll out its ‘Warmer Homes Healthier People’ strategy which will include the offer of free home checks and boiler checks for elderly residents, many of whom have become crippled by fuel poverty.
The project will also make it easier for members of the public to explore switching their energy suppliers, with a common complaint among homeowners being that it is too difficult and complicated to switch.
A person is classed as being in fuel poverty when more than 10 per cent of their income is spent on heating their home.
East Staffordshire Borough Council has invested more than £20,000 into the scheme and insists it demonstrates its commitment to supporting its most vulnerable residents.
The council has teamed up with the East Staffordshire Citizens Advice Bureau to deliver the plan which also consists of energy efficiency home visit checks and debt advice appointments.
Rachel Coe, chief officer at Age UK Burton, welcomed the news and said that support for those affected by fuel poverty was long overdue.
She said the issue had been a rising concern at the charity, particularly over the last year.
She said: “There is definitely a problem for elderly people and we work hard to try to resolve it. We have offered a service for 12 months now and in that time have seen a huge increase in people needing support.
“We have dedicated officers who deal with the elderly with housing issues and social issues. We do a lot of home visits and if we can’t help then we point them to the people who can.”
Robert Hardwick, deputy leader of regulatory services at East Staffordshire Borough Council, said: “These extra projects go to show the commitment of the council and its partners in continuing to offer that support.”
More information is available from East Staffordshire Borough Council on 01283 508483.