Water to be cheaper for poor people

22 June 2012

spring-waterWater. One of life's essentials isn't it? Despite the fact it tastes horrible without Ribena in it. Either way, everyone needs water and no-one more than the poor. They have water for their tea.

In these Tough Economic Times, water companies in England and Wales are being told by the government that, if they want, they can charge lower prices for their poorest customers. MPs aren't making a law on this or anything... merely 'guiding'.

Politicians want to see "social tariffs" based on ability to pay as they try to get utility bills cheaper. It's been estimated that 2.4 million households have trouble paying their water bills, so water companies are being asked to give a discount to a selection of their customers.

However, the water companies are currently bound by Ofwat's licensing conditions which means they can't cut bills without contravening the law.

Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg said: "If you're struggling to make ends meet, not paying for essential utilities isn't an option but it can mean making tough choices elsewhere; like sacrificing healthy meals for the family or new school books. We've already announced tough new measures to see gas and electric bills fall by up to £100 a year. This will see struggling families save more."

The Consumer Council for Water welcomed the move, saying it was vital that help was made available to customers.

A spokesman said: "We will be working with water companies to identify how, subject to customer support, social tariffs might be used as part of their wider customer affordability strategies and to ensure that customers' views are central to any decisions."

TOPICS:   Utilities   Government

12 comments

  • jaso
    yay im poor. woop
  • Idi A.
    I'm poor too! Result! Sent from my iPhone.
  • grrrrr
    Great the people who work for a living pay more out their salary to let the work shy have reduced bills
  • Natty
    To save poor people money they should be cut off from the mains supply, given a couple of buckets and a map to the nearest watercourse thus reducing the water bill to the rest of us.
  • me
    I thought that people living on the council flats had their water bills paid by us!
  • TimB
    Or, to put it another way: "Working peoples water bills to go up so scroungers don't have to pay" Fuck this for a game of soldiers, I'm going to quit working and knock up a skank so I can spend all day in the pub.
  • Inspector G.
    How about poor people stop paying £60+ for Sky first? They might be able to afford more turkey shaped liked dinosaurs in breadcrumbs if they did.
  • confused c.
    @ Inspector Gadget You will be hunted down by the European Court of Human Rights if you suggest taking Sky away from them. Shame on you.
  • Jolyon B.
    Are there no rivers? And the canals - are they still in operation? Surely show them how with a bucket, plastic sheet an an instructional video from Bear Grylls how to collect rain water would me more than enough. Give a man cheap water and he drinks every day at other peoples expense teach a man to collect water with bucket and he can water himself for life
  • Politiciansarescum
    Yet another stealth tax - don't politicians just love 'em - hiding how much of our money they are taking
  • She S.
    Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg said: “If you’re struggling to make ends meet, not paying for essential utilities isn’t an option but it can mean making tough choices elsewhere; like sacrificing healthy meals for the family or new school books. We’ve already announced tough new measures to see gas and electric bills fall by up to £100 a year. This will see struggling families save more.” What? they'll have to give up pizzas and the "Sun", Nick? I'm so glad to see that the Lib Dems have such a grasp on reality
  • The W.
    “If you’re struggling to make ends meet, not paying for essential utilities isn’t an option" - Water is actually the only utility where they aren't allowed to cut off your supply for non payment. Don't pay, they can do fuck all about it!

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