TWO Faifley youngsters are calling on Ofgem to delay the ‘forced’ installation of pre-payment energy meters as they get set to host a vigil for those lost to fuel poverty in Glasgow city centre.

Eryn Browning, 20, and Lucia Harrington, 23, want the energy regulator to hold off putting in the meters, which they say force the poorest to pay higher energy tariffs than those on monthly direct debit plans.

However, Ofgem hit back, pointing out they haven’t forcefully installed a prepayment in a long time.

In September, fuel poverty campaigners told a parliamentary committee that despite relatively mild weather, the number of excess winter deaths had climbed to 4,706, up from 3,186 a year earlier, as a result of the energy cost crisis.

And, on November 4, as the local and lead organisers of Fuel Poverty Action, Eryn and Lucia have organised a remembrance in Glasgow’s George Square for the 4706 people, with 2424 of those deaths coming from Scotland.

As part of this vigil, a procession will also be led to Ofgem’s offices demanding that Ofgem listen to their pleas to save lives this coming winter.

Erin told the Clydebank Post: “Ofgem has the power to delay the forced installation of pre-payment meters, and that means they have the literal power to save lives right now.

“Energy Bills have continued to soar for people all across Britain, and in the absence of the government’s ‘Energy Bills Support Scheme’ this year people are more vulnerable than ever before.

Clydebank Post: Eryn Browning, 20, and Lucia Harrington, 23, want the energy regulator to stop forcing prepayment meters on peopleEryn Browning, 20, and Lucia Harrington, 23, want the energy regulator to stop forcing prepayment meters on people (Image: Supplied)

Clydebank Post: Eryn (left) and Lucia Harrington (right)Eryn (left) and Lucia Harrington (right) (Image: Supplied)

“To place higher energy tariffs on them now would be tantamount to murder, it will cause deaths and the blame will be solely on those who failed to act.

“We’ve already lost so many people, there's no justification for ensuring that even more have to die.”

Also in attendance at the vigil will be members of Power To The People, Living Rent, Scottish Labour and The Scottish Green Party.

Speakers include Eryn, Duncan McDowall of 'Fight Racism! Fight Imperialism', Colin McInnes of Homeless Project Scotland, MSP Anne Mclaughlin of the SNP and Cllr Thomas Rannachan of the Labour Party.

A spokesperson for Ofgem said: “Protecting the most vulnerable consumers is at the heart of what we do and the rules we have put in place around involuntary installation of prepayment meters goes further than ever to shield the people most at risk.

“Currently, no energy supplier can carry out involuntary prepayment meter installations until they have met the conditions put in place by Ofgem earlier this year to protect the most vulnerable.

"As yet, no supplier has met those conditions.

“Prepayment meters are an important payment method that helps millions of households to manage their energy bills, but they are not suitable for everyone.

“That’s why we have put in place new rules which expand the protected 'do not install' category of customers to include households with a child under two years and anyone over 75 with no support in their home so suppliers cannot install pre-payment meters in these homes.”

Five conditions must be met before suppliers can restart involuntary installations.