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Labour pledges to scrap Bedroom Tax which has hit 586 people in Wyre Forest

On the one year anniversary of the Bedroom Tax, Dr Matt Lamb, Labour’s Prospective Parliamentary Candidate for Wyre Forest, pledged a Labour government will scrap the Bedroom Tax which has hit 586 people in Wyre Forest and 49,363 across the West Midlands.

Since David Cameron’s government introduced the Bedroom Tax low-income households have been forced to find, on average an extra £720 a year. According to the National Housing Federation two thirds of households hit by the Bedroom Tax cannot find the money to pay their rents and one in seven are at risk of eviction.

The Bedroom Tax is a cruel and unfair measure that hits half a million people, two thirds of whom are disabled. It has forced thousands into debt and thousands more to rely on food banks.

The Bedroom Tax risks costing far more money than it saves. The housing benefit bill is rising, not falling, and the Budget showed that the Chancellor had to revise up spending by £1billion over the next five years.

The next Labour Government will repeal the Bedroom Tax. It is increasingly clear that the tax could cost more than it saves, but this change is fully funded.

Dr Matt Lamb said:

“Britain can’t afford another year of David Cameron and Nick Clegg’s Bedroom Tax. 586 people in Wyre Forest have been hit by this cruel and costly tax on bedrooms. It’s time for the government to ditch the Bedroom Tax. If they don’t, then a Labour government will.”

Rachel Reeves said, “Over the past year half a million people have been hit by the Bedroom Tax, forcing thousands into debt and thousands more to rely on food banks. It’s a cruel, unfair and costly tax which targets the vulnerable, with two thirds of those affected disabled. David Cameron promised the Bedroom Tax would save money, but figures in the Budget show the housing benefit bill is rising, not falling, with a huge £1billion increase over the next five years.”

Notes

The Government’s impact assessment for the Bedroom Tax stated that two third of those affected would have a disability.

Two thirds of households affected by the bedroom tax cannot find the money to pay their rents, according to new research from the National Housing Federation. Source: http://www.housing.org.uk/media/press-releases/two-thirds-of-households-hit-by-bedroom-tax-are-in-debt-as-anniversary-appr#sthash.Ljy35ky2.dpuf

Housing benefit set to rise by £1billion over four year in March 2014 Budget (pg 132) http://budgetresponsibility.org.uk/economic-fiscal-outlook-march-2014/

On March 28 2014 employment minister Esther McVey admitted the Bedroom Tax, ‘was never all about saving money’, despite the government repeatedly claiming that it would cut costs.

Figures contained in the Budget have shown the housing benefit bill will continue rising not falling, with an increase of £1billion forecast over the next four years.

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