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To pay or not to pay exorbitant energy bills

·2-min read

This is a terrible state of affairs (Enough is enough: this winter I will be refusing to pay my energy bills, 4 August). The people running our country had all their eggs in one basket and now we are asked to pay for their mistakes. This is reminiscent of the poll tax, where there could be consequences down the line for customers who don’t pay.

I for one cannot afford the cost of energy and I’m way over the 10% income threshold for fuel poverty. I will pay, but only what I can afford. My account is in credit at present, but when energy costs rise that will soon be depleted. I will refuse any increase on my direct debit. Prior to going into the red, I will be asking my energy company for help and they are obliged to help me.

There is support for those who are struggling, and it’s time that we took advantage of this by making the energy companies pay us hardship grants for rising energy bills.

Go this route first before jumping on any bandwagon. Let’s hurt them the way they are hurting us, by taking money from them that they don’t want to give us or tell us about.
Robert Dow
Glasgow

• Jonathan Freedland (Be warned: inflation could take British politics to a very dark place indeed, 5 August) puts the Don’t Pay campaign in the context of the anti-poll tax campaign 30 years ago – rightly so. A wave of civil disobedience brought down that iniquitous tax (and the prime minister who promoted it). Enough of us making clear we won’t – or can’t – pay our exorbitant energy bills can make the government step in and tax the profits of suppliers, preferably taking them into public ownership. As Frances Ryan points out (Why is Starmer peddling the Tory ‘magic money tree’ line on public spending? It’s just bad economics, 5 August), it was able to find the money for Covid contracts and corporation tax cuts.
John Nicholson
Manchester

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