Nick Thomas-Symonds MP has thanked staff and volunteers at Torfaen Citizens Advice Bureau (CAB) for providing constituents with the advice and support they need to solve their problems.

The Torfaen MP said it was vitally important that people in Torfaen knew that there was free and impartial advice available and expressed particular concern that some constituents are paying for advice on managing debt when they could receive the same advice for free through CAB.

At an event in Parliament on Tuesday 16 June 2015 Mr Thomas-Symonds

met people from across the Citizens Advice service. He also learnt about the invaluable insight local Citizens Advice have about problems experienced by their constituents.

In the year 2014/15 Torfaen Citizens Advice Bureau helped nearly 4,500 local residents with almost 10,000 individual problems. They provide free confidential and impartial advice to people in Torfaen face to face and over the telephone.  There is also a national website providing advice online, over email and via a web chat from www.citizensadvice.org.uk

Common issues reported to the local Citizens Advice include queries about benefits, debt problems, employment and housing.

Nationally the Citizens Advice service helps 2.5 million people a year with 6.2 million issues.

Evidence from the charity shows Citizens Advice helps to solve two in three people’s problems.  Where problems can’t be fully resolved Citizens Advice will work with relevant local and national organisations to help sort out systemic issues.

Nick Thomas-Symonds MP said:

“Torfaen Citizens Advice does a great job in helping people solve their problems, and developing the skills and confidence people need to help themselves.  As your local member of Parliament, I’m keen to work closely with Citizens Advice to make sure people get access to the help they need and to tackle any local issues together.

“Volunteers are the bedrock of the Citizens Advice service. I’d like to thank the people in Torfaen who give up their own time to help others and recognise their contribution to our local community.”

Citizens Advice Chief Executive Gillian Guy said:

“The right advice and support can transform lives. Local Citizens Advice solve the problems for two in three of our clients, and empower people to develop the skills and confidence they need to help themselves.

“It’s really important that people are able to access free and impartial advice as and when they need it, whether face to face, over the phone or online.  We’re pleased to work with MPs to help them solve their constituents’ problems and address local and national issues.”

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