Help to get COSIE in the cold

There is a COSIE telephone helpline, which offers free advice on how to keep homes warm over winter and how to help cut down energy bills. It is free to call the helpline on both mobiles and landlines.

Qualifying residents could also benefit from free home visits by ‘Green Doctors’ who can offer tailored energy advice and support, including winter warmth packs with home and personal heating accessories such as fleece blankets, thermal socks and flasks. Energy saving measures, such as draught-proofing, low energy light bulbs and reflective radiator panels could also be provided.

Those likely to be eligible for the home visits include people aged 75 years or older; families on qualifying benefits with children under the age of five; and individuals with disabilities or specific long-term chronic health conditions.

Green Doctors can refer clients to other relevant support such as the council’s handyperson service which could carry out repairs to improve heat retention and save energy in the home. Where necessary, clients may be offered in-depth fuel debt advice.

Councillor Julian Bell, leader of Ealing Council, said: “We don’t want vulnerable residents to feel they have to make a choice between eating or heating. There is help available and I would urge people to contact our COSIE helpline, particularly with the chilly weather we’re having – and with February typically a cold month. Similarly, if anyone you know is likely to be at risk during severe cold weather, please help them get the advice and support they need by contacting COSIE.”

Residents can call the COSIE helpline on 0800 083 2265 between Monday-Friday, from 9.30am until 5.30pm.

Find out more information on energy efficiency.