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Politics / Carmichael and Wishart keen to hear about energy price concerns

Local Lib Dem politicians Beatrice Wishart MSP and Alistair Carmichael MP. Photos: Shetland News

SHETLAND’s political representatives are asking people to get in contact with them to raise any experiences they have had with large energy price increases and difficulties with suppliers.

Northern Isles MP Alistair Carmichael and Shetland MSP Beatrice Wishart are collating evidence in Orkney and Shetland to “demand action from energy suppliers and government on unfair charges and poor customer service”.

They said the have received representations from constituents who are frustrated with rising costs over the last few years.

The Lib Dems also pointed to recent research from comparethemarket which found 72 per cent of households across the UK have seen an increase in their energy usage since lockdown began.

Carmichael said: “Too many households in the Northern Isles remain in fuel poverty. The added impact of the pandemic and the economic uncertainty make that chronic challenge all the more acute.

“It is all the more important then that customers are charged fairly for their energy use and that billing issues are sorted out quickly.

“In these difficult times we all need to play our part in supporting one another. Correspondence we have received from constituents, however, shows that some energy suppliers are not necessarily doing what they should to support their customers.

“We would encourage anyone who has experienced energy issues to contact us so that we can gather evidence of the scale of the problem in the Northern Isles.”

Wishart said that when increasing energy prices are “coupled with stretched budgets as a consequence of the coronavirus pandemic, this will be worrying time for many people”.

“Islanders shouldn’t be penalised with unfair costs,” the MSP added.

“We know that some people feel that the price they’re being charged per unit has gone through the roof in recent months with no real justification from energy companies. We also know it’s difficult for some people to switch providers because of meters used in the isles.”