I led a debate in Parliament to highlight consistently poor customer service by energy companies, and called on the UK Government to introduce a consumer charter for the energy industry. I secured the debate after my staff and I compiled examples of consistently poor customer service from energy companies. I have also written to constituents to highlight problems and offer support.
Major issues reported by constituents included incorrect billing, and lengthy waits for replacement smart meters which have left constituents unable to manage their usage.
I raised a number of cases including:
A constituent who was £900 in credit with their energy company but whose bills were still being increased.
Another who was overcharged and paid a £700 bill for fear of enforcement measures. The company repaid only £500, insisting that £200 remain as credit on the customer’s account.
A constituent whose smart meter stopped working in October 2022 and has yet to receive a replacement. They say their bills are now based on estimates and are increasing as a result.
Another who had a smart meter installed against her wishes, only for it to be unable to connect to the internet. Her energy company is now insisting on charging her to reinstall the previous meter.
I was glad to be able to raise so many of the problems faced by my constituents in the debate, but the reality is that I want their issues to be solved. The current, abysmally poor service on the part of many energy companies means that is far harder than it should be. That’s why the government needs to step in and fix the broken system by bringing in a new consumer rights charter for energy customers.