Monday, February 25, 2008

Heat or food? It's your call

You may recall that last week I told you about a call from Kent on Sunday, who wanted a quote on the astonishing levels of profit from energy companies in general, and British Gas in particular, and how it related to older people in the county.

I was delighted to read a very balanced and informed piece yesterday from Jenna Pudelek - "OAP's charity rails against energy firm's fat cat profits". (Click on the article to the right to read)

Ann Hunter, Chief Officer of Age Concern in Ashford set out the very clear choice confronting many elderly residents. "The concern is they could use the little money they get for heating rather than food because when you're on a limited income you have to look at every penny you get."

What has our society come to? We allow energy providers to become bloated oligarcies, charging ever higher prices, with no compulsion to bring in alternative energy, no market regulation, and largely toothless regulatory processes.

Demography tells us to look forward to higher and higher numbers of elderly and frail people, who deserve to be supported and cared for in their twilight years. And yet what's the choice we present them with?

"Heat or food? It's your call..."

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