Cost of Electricity Concerns Seniors’ Advocate
The Seniors’ Advocate is very concerned about the impact of increased cost of electricity on all citizens, but particularly on lower income seniors.
In the past six months the Advocate has received numerous phone calls, emails, letters, and held face to face meetings with groups of seniors.
It is well known that very basic of human needs include food, water, warmth and rest yet seniors have consistently expressed concern about their financial ability to provide for the physiological need of warmth.
On July 1, 2018, the cost of electricity increased by 6.6 per cent. Another request to increase is before the Public Utilities Board.
Information released to the public and reinforced through media indicates that the cost of electricity may double by 2021.
Currently almost 20 per cent of citizens in Newfoundland and Labrador are age 65 years and older. Approximately 15,000 senior couples (30,000 individuals) have income of less than $41,200 while 11,000 single seniors have income of $24,300 or less.
Many of these seniors live on fixed incomes with limited ability to access paid work.