People on low incomes and with certain protected characteristics are more likely to be paying extra costs for essentials such as electricity, gas, credit, and insurance according to research commissioned by Fair By Design. This is the case even when compared with low income households as a whole. The findings suggest that the UK marketplace is discriminating against groups of people, albeit indirectly.

We already know that some protected characteristics are linked to an increased risk of poverty. We also know that the pandemic has disproportionately impacted these groups[1], in terms of both financial and physical wellbeing. As this new research shows, people’s resilience is also affected by having to pay a premium for being poor. Intersectionality also plays a large role: the more protected characteristics a person has, the more likely they are to be in poverty – and paying a poverty premium.

This research was covered in The Guardian and Independent.