Laura O’Reilly, the local People Before Profit representative in Tallaght South has condemned the fact that consumers who use prepaid meters are paying above the odds!
In a statement Laura said ‘The numbers on prepaid meters have shot up and these are now installed in 365,000 households. ‘Some companies install these meters but they charge more for the electricity. Over the course of a year, you will pay an extra €600 if you consume the average amount. ‘Many are now facing cut-offs this winter and the government says it is very concerned. But they have only set aside a miserly €3 million hardship fund to be administered by MABS and the Vincent de Paul.
‘The government could involve its legal powers to order companies to reduce energy costs and particularly target those who prey on low-income users who have pre-paid meters. ‘They could abolish the standing charge for those who want to switch to bill pay. But they refuse. ‘People Before Profit want the nationalisation of the energy sector because ‘liberalisation’ has been a disaster.
Ever since the crash of 2008, for example, there has been a ‘rebalancing’ of energy costs to reduce the price for large corporations and to increase prices for domestic users. ‘It is estimated that an extra burden of €600 million was added to domestic bills over that period. ‘Enough is enough – let’s put energy supply under public ownership.’