A single mum in Brisbane has revealed how the country’s cost-of-living crisis has caused electricity bills to soar to $1,500.
Linice Davidson, who lives with four of her six children in Brighton, north of the city, said the expenses of raising a disabled child left her barely able to stay afloat.
This was evident in household costs, which have skyrocketed since their government payments were cut as the crisis deepened.
Lynes says her troubles came to a head when she received a huge $1,500 electric bill, which was largely due to charging her teenage daughter Angel’s electric wheelchair, which she uses because of a heart condition.
“She has a pacemaker. I have to charge her motorized wheelchair. I, you know, just do all that stuff, but you have to keep working and the NDIS won’t cover it.”
Sixteen-year-old Angel’s heart condition also meant that the family’s home had to be kept constantly cool during the warm Queensland summers.
“It’s crazy, bill amount, but I’m going to have to accept it. My daughter must be cooler during those hot summers because she has a heart condition.”
“So I can’t wait for something to happen. I have to keep it cooler and I have to do that.”
Lynes said her feelings were made worse when an employee at the electric company made an unsettling prediction about her future.
“I pay $200 fortnightly,” she said, “and in fact the guy from the electric company said to me ‘All I can tell you is you’re going to pay that money for the rest of your life.'”
“I can’t pay more than that.”
However, the family’s troubles have been helped by support from The Smith Family Charity which provides schoolchildren with supplies and support.
Linice said her family would have struggled to survive without the help.
“I will never be able to afford[the cost of living],” she said.
I won’t be able to buy children’s books. We won’t be able to do that because I have four kids in school. I have two in high school and two in elementary school.”
Australia has experienced massive inflation over the past 12 months with the likes of groceries up 10 per cent since 2021, according to the Frugl Grocery Price Index.
The National Treasury estimated in October that electricity prices would rise an average of 20 percent in late 2022 alone, before jumping another 30 percent in 2023-24.
The main focus of the Smith family is helping young Australians overcome inequalities in education caused by poverty.
The charity is launching a back-to-school appeal, with more than 6,000 sponsors sought for its Education Support programme, which provides financial, emotional and practical support, including reading, writing and mentoring programmes, to disadvantaged students.
To support the Smith family’s back-to-school appeal, visit: thesmithfamily.com.au/sponsor
Originally Posted as Mum Who Got $1,500 Bill Due to Brutal Electricity Company Warning