Sarwar: 'Only Labour will stand up for families in the North East'

Scottish Labour leader Anas Sarwar has said only Labour councils will stand up for those affected by the cost-of-living standard in the North East as the local election campaign continues.

According to Scottish Labour analysis, just under one in four (23 per cent) of households in the North East are living in fuel poverty, with that percentage likely to increase with higher gas and electricity bills.

Mr Sarwar added that it was “scandalous” so many were struggling to pay the bills, with more than one in ten (12 per cent) considered to struggle with extreme fuel poverty.

He said: “People in the North East have been hit as hard as anyone else by the cost of living crisis, and they too are being betrayed by Tories and the SNP inaction.

“It is scandalous that many people are struggling to pay some of the energy highest bills in the country while they can see it being produced on their doorstep.

“The Tories are depriving the thousands of people in the North East of the support they need in order to protect the record profits of massive multi-national companies – it is shameful to pretend it’s in their interest.

“I want the people in the North East to feel the benefits of the area’s natural resources, instead of the bosses and shareholders of companies making £44,000 of profits every minute.”

Statistics obtained by Scottish Labour also showed that 16 per cent of people across the North East are also earning below minimum wage, with those in Aberdeenshire most likely to be earning below that level, affecting 23.3 per cent of households in the council area.

Scottish Labour leader Anas Sarwar has said only his party is standing up for people in the North East

The party also highlighted the fact nearly 30,000 food parcels have been handed out in the region, with a total of just over 37,000 crisis grant applications coming from families in the North East as well.

Mr Sarwar added: “Scottish Labour are the only party truly standing up for people in the North East, by offering a lifeline to the thousands facing fuel poverty, worrying about their bills and struggling to make ends meet.

“Our plans could save households over £1,000 and deliver more for each and every person in the region than the SNP and the Tories’ paltry offering.”

The SNP was contacted for comment.

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