THE so-called ‘Bedroom Tax’ which is part of housing benefit reforms has been slammed by Bulwell Labour MP Graham Allen as ‘yet another attack on the poor’.
He says: “Under these reforms by the Coalition Government, those deemed to be over-accommodated will lose up to 25% of their housing benefit which typically equates to £18.62 for a three bed roomed terrace house in Nottingham.
“This is another attack on poor people out of work or on low income by a Government which has just become so remote from the population of the country.”
“I wonder how many bankers who created the mess are ‘over-accommodated’. What steps will the Government take to curtail their incomes? I ask how many seven bedroomed houses, occupied by bankers in the south east could be made available for the poor.”
“The government has acknowledged to me that these measures will cause additional hardship and so have had to increase the Discretionary Benefit budget. This is there to keep people off the streets. Food banks, discretionary hand-outs and soup kitchens is what Con-Lib Dem Britain represents, not in 1923 but 2013.
“When you force people to move, often away from the community in which they have lived all their lives, you break up society. Elderly and vulnerable become isolated with the inevitable misery following. Often they need to move into expensive sheltered accommodation earlier than they would have if they, or their nearby family stayed put.”
Mr Allen posed the question of whether this was the government’s idea of the ‘Big Society’.