Peebles: Citizens Advice Scotland issues broadband warning

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At a national level, the charity is campaigning for greater promotion and eligibility for ‘social rates’.

A social rate is a cheaper deal available to people who receive social security benefits such as Universal Credit.

Telecoms regulator Ofcom estimates that 8.3 percent of people eligible for these deals use them across Britain.

CAS says if this figure were mirrored in Scotland it would mean 396,231 people on Universal Credit in Scotland could miss out on cheaper deals.

Kyle Scott, spokesperson for Citizens Advice Scotland Strong Communities, said: “Social rates have been a lifeline for people during the cost of living crisis.

“As the pandemic has shown, access to the internet is not just a matter of leisure, it is an essential tool to help people live, work and learn.

“We have seen some growth in the number of providers offering social rates in recent years, which is very welcome, but social rates as a whole are still undervalued and underutilized by consumers.

“Hundreds of thousands of people could miss out on cheaper deals.

“These deals should be further extended to other groups who would benefit, such as people with disabilities or those fleeing domestic violence.

“They can be a great tool to help people access services, training or work, and can be a real benefit to people in vulnerable situations.”

Elsewhere, Peebles CAB is looking for people who live locally and want to contribute to the community by joining the Board of Trustees.

A spokesperson said: “We are looking for team players with a strategic vision, independent judgment and a willingness to give time and dedication to help support and develop our organisation.

“This is an exciting time to join as we look forward to developing and strengthening our services to meet the challenges our community will face. Your ideas, skills and enthusiasm can make a difference in how we achieve this.

“Applicants must be over 18 years of age and have the experience and skills to ensure the charity continues to develop and deliver high-quality, long-term services.

“As a trustee you must ensure good governance of the organisation, which includes regularly attending board meetings and an Annual General Meeting.

“This is a great opportunity to shape the future of information and advice services in Tweeddale and help make a real difference to the local area.

“This is a voluntary role but fees are paid and the closing date for applications is February 5, 2024.”

To apply or for further information, email: gill.westwood@peeblesCAB.casonline.org.uk

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