Britain’s biggest pensioner organisation, the National Pensioners Convention (NPC) has called on the government to introduce a 3 point plan to tackle the scale of winter deaths amongst older people.
The call follows the publication of the official excess winter death figures for last winter which provisionally show 24,000 older people – 200 a day : 8 an hour – died from cold related illnesses.
Dot Gibson, NPC general secretary said: “Every year tens of thousands of older people die needlessly from the cold, yet the government seems incapable of tackling the problem. Ministers need to take this scandal seriously and introduce a 3 point plan that increases the winter fuel allowance to £500 for every pensioner household, expands the programme of insulation and energy efficiency measures across the country and prevents the big six energy companies from making excessive profits from vulnerable customers.”
“At least 3m pensioner households are currently in fuel poverty and every time there’s a 1% increase in fuel bills a further 8000 people join the ranks of the fuel poor. For too long successive governments have simply tried to ignore the scale of winter deaths amongst older people, but no civilised society would allow this to keep happening. We need action from government now.”