Clawback of previous credit by company “hurting the most vulnerable as winter approaches,” says TD
People Before Profit TD Bríd Smith is calling on the Commission for the Regulation of Utilities to stop gas companies, including Electric Ireland, from clawing back the credit that was advanced to their customers at the start of the pandemic which is “hurting the most vulnerable as winter approaches”.
The company has been retrieving the advanced credit by taking 60% of any customer’s top up for their meters. Electric Ireland advanced up to €100 in credit at the start of the Covid 19 restrictions as people faced difficulties getting tops ups during the lockdown.
Deputy Smith attacked the clawback of credit saying: “It’s way too much, too soon and it’s too heavy a burden for many of the most vulnerable people who needed to avail of the credit in the first place.
“This means some people will simply have to go without heating or cooking facilities as the amount taken back in any one transaction is way too much. The very people most exposed to fuel and energy poverty are the ones being hit here.”
The TD has contacted the Minister for Climate Action, Communications Networks and Transport and is appealing to the company to lessen the amount and timing of the clawback.
“I’m asking them to stop such a heavy clawback, especially as we now come into bouts of bad weather and give people more time to pay this back.”