A stronger voice for consumers - Representing consumers in energy, postal services and water (in Scotland)
Over recent years Citizens Advice and Citizens Advice Scotland have taken on new responsibilities for consumers. From 2012 to 2014 we took over the national telephone consumer helpline and the lead role for consumer education from the former Office for Fair Trading and the general consumer advocacy role of the former Consumer Focus.
Last year we took responsibility from Consumer Futures for representing the interests of consumers of energy and postal services in England, Scotland and Wales and for water consumers in Scotland.
Bringing these functions together in a single partnership between our two charities has delivered a simpler advice landscape for consumers, a deeper and richer evidence base of consumer experiences and a more powerful advocate for consumer interests. Our particular role in energy, post and water requires us to be clear about our priorities so we can work closely with a range of policy makers, regulators and market participants to improve outcomes for consumers. This role is funded, in the main, by consumers through levies raised from market participants. We therefore also have a responsibility to be clear about how we use that money to achieve the best outcomes for consumers.
This work programme [ 410 kb] covers the activities of Citizens Advice and Citizens Advice Scotland in relation to our priorities in these essential markets for 2015/16. The outcomes identified against each priority reflect our focus for consumers over a longer period.
We will account for the impact of this work programme, and any additional activity undertaken in the financial year, in an Annual Report. That report will be published as soon after the end of the financial year as possible and will outline transparently how public funds have been spent against our priorities.