Wednesday, 13 March 2013

BEDROOM TAX ON THE POOR AND THE DISABLED

Kent Green Party is disturbed by another Coalition Government attack on the poorest and most vulnerable in our society. Dr Hazel Dawe, Campaigns Officer of Kent Green Party, comments on the Bedroom tax and its victims:

“The poorest households in Kent and Medway have already had several years of big increases in energy and food bills, and real terms cuts in both wages and benefits.  Now the Coalition Government’s ‘bedroom tax’ being introduced in April will make about 17,000 people in Kent and Medway poorer. They will have to move or face average benefit losses of £569 a year(1). The tax is indiscriminate and unjust, it penalises the disabled, single parents, families of those recently deceased, foster parents and the parents of children in the army or at university(2). The retrospective nature of the tax makes it particularly unjust as people did not know about the threat to benefits when they took up the tenancy(3).
“The "Bedroom Tax", is part of a welfare change that will cut the amount of benefit that people of working age can get if they are considered to have a spare bedroom. This means they will have 14% of their Housing Benefit cut for one spare room, or 25% for two or more(4). There is no clear definition of what is a bedroom: the Government is leaving this to social landlords and the Department of Work and Pensions to define(5). Dining rooms could for example be included or excluded.
There is even a legal case in which ten children with a variety of problems are challenging the Government because of their need for separate bedrooms (6)(7)!”

ends

FURTHER INFORMATION: Dr Hazel Dawe, Campaigns Officer, KENT GREEN PARTY, on 079444 71083 or 01732 355185. Contact address as above. Promoted by H.Dawe for Kent Green Party, both at 27 Audley Avenue, Tonbridge, Kent TN9 1XF. KENT GREEN NEWS, free ezine, is available by subscription at www.kentgreenparty.org

Notes:
1. http://www.porchlight.org.uk/media-centre/press-releases/over-17000-people-in-kent-and-medway-to-fall-foul-of-bedroom-tax/

2.      http://bolton.greenparty.org.uk/news/2013-03-09-bedroomtax.html
3.      . http://northwest.greenparty.org.uk/news.html/2013/03/02/lancaster-green-councillors-act-on-bedroom-tax/
4.      The power to do this is contained in the Welfare Act 2012, and is commonly referred to as the criteria or under-occupation penalty.
5. http://mk.greenparty.org.uk/news/2013-02-24-mk-green-party-opposes-the-bedroom-tax.html
6.      The case will not be heard until after the Bedroom tax comes into force next month: http://www.insidehousing.co.uk/tenancies/children-launch-legal-challenge-to-%E2%80%98bedroom-tax%E2%80%99/6525992.article#.UTTZdoYJmr4
7.      Full constituency breakdown, which may be used as part of the release at the discretion of the recipient, see attached table.

No comments: