MORE than a fifth of North East households are struggling to find money for fuel.
Department of Energy and Climate Change statistics show the percentage of “fuel poor” in the region stands at 21.3 per cent.
A report by charity Barnardo’s claimed many such families are being forced to scrimp on heat.
And that they are “priced out” of keeping their homes at the recommended level of warmth, and struggle to put hot food on the table for their children.
Barnardo’s chief executive Anne Marie Carrie says: “If we’re serious about tackling child poverty then we need to get serious about tackling fuel poverty, too.
“Families should never have to choose between whether to heat their homes or put food on the table for their children.
Barnardo’s wants the Government to recycle money received in carbon revenue back to house holds, to help insulate homes.
Ms Carrie said: “Energy companies have a moral duty to behave responsibly by ensuring that the poorest families are on the lowest energy tariffs available, and that prices for pre-payment meters are brought down to the same rates as online tariffs.
“We would urge the Government to tackle fuel poverty by the root and recycle its carbon tax revenue to make homes in the UK more energy efficient.”