A Wexford TD has called on the Government to act…
Sinn Féin TD for Wexford, Johnny Mythen has called for all TDs to back the party’s Motion, which calls for urgent action from Government on spiralling home energy costs.
The Bill will be debated in the Dáil on Tuesday.
Speaking to Wexford Weekly on the matter, Teachta Mythen said:
“Sinn Féin’s Motion calls for urgent measures to support households affected by soaring home energy costs.
“Costs have already risen by around €500 a year for an average household with over 30 price hikes by providers in the last year alone and these costs continue to rise.
“This week alone, Bord Gáis Energy have announced further increases which will take effect from next month.
“It is clear that we are in a serious cost of living crisis and the Government must act now to help workers and families.
“The measures announced by Government in recent weeks, while welcome, do nothing to address the spiralling cost of home heating.
“For example, their measure to extend Fuel Allowance will be provided only to those who already qualify for the payment, and the Exceptional Needs Allowance, which the Government have consistently pushed as an option for households yet, anyone working 30 hours or more per week cannot apply.
“We are hearing of many workers and families struggling to make ends meet, including in my own constituency of Wexford.
“A recent poll carried out by Red C on behalf of the Society of Saint Vincent de Paul (SVP) found that 37% of people have cut back on essential heating and electricity use and 17% have cut back on other essentials, such as food, the poll found. This is completely unacceptable.
“People are under huge financial pressure and they need support. Despite this, many working households continue to be locked out of access to support with eye-watering rises in energy costs.
“Sinn Féin’s Dáil Motion on rising energy costs put forward a range of measures which would support households at this time.
“This includes the introduction of a “cost of living cash payment” of €200 for every adult with an income less than €30,000 and €100 for every adult with an income between €30,000 and €60,000.
“In addition to our continued call for the cancellation of the scheduled carbon tax increase in May, we are proposing a further reduction of excise duty on petrol and diesel and the removal of the excise duty on home heating oil for a temporary period.
“We are again calling on the Government to establish a Discretionary Fund to support households who are struggling with utility debt.
“We also need to see the Fuel Allowance extended to those in receipt of the Working Family Payment, which is a payment for provided to low-income working households.
“It is crucial that the Government take further action on soaring home heating costs, and that they take it now. We need to see supports that reflect the scale of this crisis.
“I am urging all TDs in Wexford and across the Dáil to back Sinn Féin’s Motion to support workers and families with rising energy costs.”
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