Ofgem’s so-called “shake-up” of the energy market has done very little to address the real problem facing older people in Britain. Every year, tens of thousands of pensioners die needlessly from cold related illnesses – largely due to the fact that the UK has a terrible combination of poor housing stock which is difficult to heat, low pensioner incomes and ever rising fuel bills.
Asking people to switch is simply pointless to the majority of pensioners who have never even been online or don’t own a computer. So Ofgem are recommending the pensioner from Penzance and the breadline family from Bolton are to receive prompts on their bills or letters from suppliers urging them to switch. But why not automatically put them on the cheapest deal? Better still, why not start a discussion about bringing the energy industry back into public ownership?