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Monday, 20 April 2015

Bedroom Tax and its impending demise?

My last blog looked at what the various political parties were saying about Access to Justice as we approached the election.

Another subject which has often featured in this blog is the dreaded Bedroom Tax. This is the draconian law introduced by the coalition which results in tenants losing housing benefit if they are deemed to have too many rooms. 

It is approaching 2 years since I first highlighted the issue –

It has seen people facing the loss of their homes and, at the same time, losing the right to legal aid to help them fight evictions.

Only last month, the Guardian was reporting on the health problems caused by the tax –

So what are the parties saying about it?

It is encouraging that the Labour Party in its manifesto commits to its abolition. The Green Party has a similar commitment. Plaid Cymru has long ago pledged to get rid of it. Scotland was liberated from the impact of the tax in 2014 –

So what about the coalition partners who gave us the Bedroom Tax in the first place? The Lib Dems voted down efforts to abolish it last year. But in their manifesto they promise reforms. These include a promise that tenants will not lose benefits until they have been offered suitable alternative accomodation. They also build in protection for those who need an extra room for medical reasons. It is isn't quite to complete abolition that some of us would like but is better than the status quo.

We know what the Conservatives think of it. It is their brain child and will remain in place if they form the next government. Interestingly UKIP unequivocally opposes it.

So, unless we have a Conservative majority on 7th May, the days of this particular injustice seem to be numbered.

Fingers crossed!


  1. That is about the craziest tax I've ever heard of (and I live in the states and we have plenty of stupid ones also).

    1. We all have them Gary! But hopefully this one is doomed...