More Kiwis left in cold after power cut off

Press Release – New Zealand Labour Party

New figures obtained by Labour show almost 20,000 Kiwis have had their power cut off this year because they cant afford to pay their electricity bills, Labour Leader David Cunliffe says.

30 September 2013 MEDIA STATEMENT

More Kiwis left in cold after power cut off

New figures obtained by Labour show almost 20,000 Kiwis have had their power cut off this year because they can’t afford to pay their electricity bills, Labour Leader David Cunliffe says.

“About 19,245 households had their power disconnected in the first half of this year alone. This is significantly higher than the same time last year and means disconnections for 2013 are likely to exceed 2012 when the number hit 40,000.

“That equates to 106 households having their power cut off every day, or four every hour.

“It comes as new figures from the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment show power use fell 2.5 per cent in the June quarter, but prices rose 3.3 per cent or four times the rate of inflation.

“That means power has risen an average of $11.20 this quarter despite no increases in line charges. This is on top of an increase of about $50 last quarter.

“Grey Power is concerned there are increasing numbers of elderly suffering pneumonia and bad colds because of high power prices.

“It is tragic that people in New Zealand are forced to go to bed early to avoid putting their heaters on.

“A Labour government will take action to bring down New Zealand’s power prices. NZ Power will reduce the average bill for households by hundreds of dollars a year. Our plan will boost the economy and create jobs.

“Labour’s policies will stop people having to choose between their health and their power bill,” David Cunliffe says.

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