How British Gas supports vulnerable customers

At British Gas, we do more than any other energy supplier to support vulnerable customers. Over the last five years, we have spent more than £1.3bn helping those in need, including opening our doors to fifteen organisations to share best practice in supporting vulnerable customers.

In 2017 we were very proud to be awarded the British Standards Institute accreditation for our work with vulnerable customers (BS 18477). Also, in that year:

  • We spent £150m helping 740,000 households (discounts, free insulation and benefits advice).
  • We helped 126,000 customers who were having difficulties paying their bills by putting them on to manageable repayment plans, tailored to meet their individual needs to ensure they didn’t fall further into debt.
  • We gave over £10m to the British Gas Energy Trust, which was able to help over 26,000 families and fund 50 specialist energy debt advisers across 25 partner organisations, including Citizens Advice and Shelter.
  • We provided the £140 Warm Home Discount to more than 650,000 of our customers
  • We carried out 2,800 benefit health checks with customers to make sure they were getting all the income that they were entitled to.
  • We gave nearly 3,000 adapters to customers with mobility problems to help them use their energy easier and safer.
  • We opened our doors to 15 organisations to share best practice in supporting vulnerable customers.
  • We added over 800,000 customers to the Priority Services Register, which offers additional help to vulnerable households. We now have 2.7m households registered for this service.
  • We partnered with National Energy Action, the UK’s leading fuel poverty charity, to celebrate and share best practice in making homes healthier and more energy efficient through our Energy Impact Awards.
  • We provided jobs for disadvantaged young people through our Movement to Work programme.
  • 5,800 of our employees contributed a total of 57,000 hours volunteering for charities to help those most in need in our communities.
  • We invested over £150m in mandatory, voluntary and charitable contributions to help people in vulnerable circumstances.
  • We referred over 5,500 people to StepChange Debt charity, which helps people who are having difficulties paying their bills and need advice on how to manage their finances.
  • We launched our SignVideo online translation service for British Sign Language users so they can communicate with us in their language of choice, using a specially trained team in Southampton.
  • We won the Dementia Friendly Organisation of the Year award, recognising our success in creating over 21,000 Dementia Friends and becoming dementia-friendly.
  • We worked with the Alzheimer’s Society to write a guide to best practice in being dementia friendly for all utility companies (which was launched by Secretary of State Greg Clark in February 2018).
  • We partnered with children’s cancer charity CLIC Sargent to launch a pioneering referral service. This ensures that any family with a child or young person who gets a diagnosis of cancer will get the support they need to stay safe, warm and debt free if they are served by British Gas.