Cost of living pressures impact many Queenslanders, particularly those on low incomes who may be experiencing poverty and disadvantage.

The cost of essential services, such as electricity, water and public transport has a significant impact on low-income households, who typically spend a higher proportion of their income on essentials.

QCOSS tracks the cost of living over time for a number of example households through our Cost of Living reports.

On these pages you will find information, factsheets, links and news items to assist you in helping your clients maintain access to essential services, and keep you up-to-date on changes that may affect you or your clients. The information covers:

  • General financial and budgeting advice

  • Electricity and gas bills

  • Water bills

  • Transport information

  • Telecommunications information

  • Emergency relief

If you are interested in getting more information, QCOSS is available to provide community organisations with hands-on advice and workshops to help you support your clients struggling with electricity and water bills. If you are interested in participating in a workshop or would like to join our mailing list, please drop us a line at essentially-fair@qcoss.org.au or call 07 3004 6900.

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The Queensland Competition Authority (QCA) has released its final decision on regulated retail electricity prices for 2015-16. Overall a residential customer with typical consumption on the main residential tariff (tariff 11) can expect a reduction of around $7 or 0.5% in their 2015-16 annual bill...
ACCAN logo
The Australian Communications Consumer Action Network (ACCAN) has launched an online hardship portal that has a range of resources to assist people who may be experiencing tough times and finding it hard to pay their phone or internet bills. The portal is designed for financial counsellors as well...
Do you assist clients struggling with energy bills and want to learn more about how you can help them and what assistance is available? Do you want to be involved in a conversation about energy issues in your region? If you are a frontline worker for a community organisation who assists clients...
Shower head
Unitywater, which services the Moreton Bay, Noosa and Sunshine Coast region, has announced that there will be no increase to its water and sewerage fees in the next financial year. The zero per cent increase will apply to Unitywater prices from 1 July 2015 with the exception of trade waste,...
Electricity meter
The Australian Energy Regulator (AER) has released revised Retail Information Guidelines for consultation. The AER proposes a number of amendments to how retailers comply with the Guidelines and the layout, format and content of Energy Price Fact Sheets. The consultation process seeks stakeholder...
Ergon Energy held two webinars on 18 March 2015 to provide interested stakeholders the opportunity to learn more about their proposed network tariff reforms for 2015-16 and beyond. To find out more about the network tariff reforms watch the videos or review the presentations. Customers using less...
Electricity bills have become a huge priority issue for many low income and disadvantaged households. Prices have increased by 86 per cent in the last five years and in 2013-14 there were more households disconnected from electricity for not paying a bill than ever before. The QCOSS Essential...
Do you assist clients struggling with energy bills and want to learn more about how you can help them, what assistance is available, and how future reforms may impact your clients? If you are a frontline worker for a community organisation who assists clients with energy related information, advice...
A new report has been released today on the comparator website industry in Australia by the Australian Consumer & Competition Commission (ACCC). The report sets out recent actions the ACCC has taken relating to misleading conduct and provides a framework for the industry moving forward...
The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) is taking action against EnergyAustralia and its telemarketing company, Bright Choice, for allegedly making false or misleading representations and engaging in misleading or deceptive conduct in selling EnergyAustralia’s electricity and gas...

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