The energy market needs regulation – but regulation that does not penalise members

UNISON members working in the energy sector support vulnerable and distressed customers day in and day out, delegates at UNISON’s energy conference in Glasgow heard today.

And yet members were concerned that attempts to rein in excessive profits or poor practices could penalise members in the retail business and leave them to pay for the mistakes and excessive greed of a few.

Service group executive chair Jenny Middleton described meeting new friends and “admitting” that she worked for British Gas: “The looks that I got weren’t good.”

She then explained that her work was with vulnerable customers, arranging payments to help with their electricity bills.

“The market needs to be regulated,” said Ms Middleton, “but it needs to be done fairly and we need to make sure that it doesn’t affect our members’ terms and conditions and their jobs.”