Councillors Hear That 850 Hit by Tory/LibDem Bedroom Tax in Aberdeenshire

>> 7 November 2013

Aberdeenshire councillors heard today that over 850 locally have been hit by the Tory/Lib Dem UK Government’s decision to target tenants with the Bedroom Tax.

The discriminatory tax affects around 80,000 households in Scotland, 80 per cent of which are the home of a disabled adult, and 16,000 of which are the home of families with children.

In April 2013 more than 850 tenants in Aberdeenshire (approx 7% of the council’s housing stock) were affected by the Bedroom Tax, which reduces housing benefit by 14% for those deemed to have one bedroom more than they need, and 25% for those with two or more bedrooms extra.

Commenting SNP councillor Allison Grant (West Garioch) said:

“The UK Government has shown a reckless lack of care and attention to the consequences of the introduction of the Bedroom Tax for low-income households.

"In contrast the SNP Government is doing all it can to help mitigate the impact of this divisive policy and Nicola Sturgeon pledged that funding for Discretionary Housing Payments will continue next year with another £20 million to help victims of the London Government’s Bedroom Tax.

“The Scottish Parliament’s Welfare Reform Committee produced a report which shows that over 300 of those currently in rent arrears in Aberdeenshire are in arrears purely as a result of the Bedroom Tax. That is a shocking figure and it makes it all the more worrying that the Tory/Lib Dem/Labour administration in Aberdeenshire Council wouldn’t commit to removing the threat of eviction from those in arrears as a result of the Bedroom Tax.”

Fraserburgh & District councillor Brian Topping added:

“The UK Government is actually penalising people for not being able to move to one-bedroomed properties because previous Tory Governments sold them off and didn’t build replacements.

“A majority of Scottish MPs voted against the introduction of the Bedroom Tax yet it has still been imposed on us. Only a Yes vote in next year’s independence referendum will scrap the Bedroom Tax and we will not have governments we didn’t vote for imposing ridiculous policies like this on us.”

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