Polling for charity Citizens Advice Scotland (CAS) by YouGov has found 41% of Scottish adults found their financial position got worse during the pandemic, with 15% saying their position has got a lot worse.
Taking into account Scotland’s adult working age population, this would represent 1.82 million people across the country.
“With household budgets set to take a battering in the coming months with rising energy bills and prices in the shops, CAS has today launched a new campaign called Debt Happens,” said CAS.
“The campaign seeks to encourage people that they are not alone in facing debt and to get advice from across the Citizens Advice network.”
CAS Financial Health spokesperson Myles Fitt said: “The pandemic created a hugely challenging set of financial circumstances for people and with over 1.8 million adults in Scotland seeing their finances get worse since March 2020.
“Restrictions may be easing, but there will be no let-up in pressure on household budgets, with energy bills soaring and record inflation colliding with flat and falling incomes.
“That all adds up to more and more people being at risk of debt. Our message to people with this new campaign is that debt happens, and you’re not alone.
“It’s nothing to be ashamed of and the important thing is to seek advice quickly so you get the help and support you need.
“People can get help in a variety of ways across the Citizens Advice network, from local CABs to our online resources like our public advice site and online Money Map tool.
“Some people will benefit from negotiated repayment schemes which brings their monthly payments down, but for many others getting more money in their pockets in the first place will help.
“Our advice is free, impartial and confidential and we’d encourage anyone who would benefit from advice to seek it as soon as possible. Don’t let the bills and the stress pile up, we’re here to help.”