The Tory-led Government’s Bedroom Tax has hit over 500 people in Enfield North and should be abolished, Joan Ryan has said.
Out campaigning on the issue in Enfield Lock with the Shadow Welfare Reform Minister, Helen Goodman MP, on Thursday 29th January, Ms Ryan discussed with residents the adverse effects this policy was having locally.
The Bedroom Tax was brought in by the Tory-led Government in April 2013. Tenants in housing association or council homes are being forced to pay extra by the Government if their homes are deemed to have spare bedrooms. In August 2014, 501 housing benefit claimants in Enfield North were paying the Bedroom Tax. The average cost to a family hit by the Bedroom Tax in Enfield and throughout London is £1060 per year. The tax has hit 500,000 people nationally – two thirds of whom are disabled – and very few have been given the option to move to smaller, social housing accommodation.
Labour has pledged to remove the Bedroom Tax, if the Party wins the General Election in May. In December 2014, the Party called a vote in Parliament on the abolition of the Bedroom Tax. The current Conservative MP for Enfield North, Nick de Bois, voted to keep the tax in place.
Joan Ryan, Labour’s Parliamentary Candidate for Enfield North, said:
“We need to get the welfare budget under control. However the Bedroom Tax, which is being paid by over 500 people in Enfield North, is unfair and unworkable and hits those on low incomes that we should be helping. It is a symbol of an out of touch, uncaring Tory government that stands up for only a privileged few.
The government knew when they introduced the tax that there weren’t enough smaller properties for people to move into but they inflicted this unnecessary hardship anyway. Labour has pledged to abolish the Bedroom Tax and I will do everything possible to make it happen.”
Helen Goodman MP, Shadow Welfare Reform Minister, said:
“The government has imposed the Bedroom Tax on families who are already hard pressed to make ends meet. The government’s own studies show that people are having to cut back on household essentials as a result. Only a Labour government will abolish the Bedroom Tax.
Enfield North is a key marginal seat – voters here can make a difference not just for themselves but for the hundreds of thousands of families across Britain paying this cruel tax.”