Swansea Anti-Cuts Campaign Says No to Bedroom Tax

4th April 2013

Here we carry a press release from Swansea Anti-Cuts Campaign following last night's meeting. We call on people affected, their friends, family & neighbours to join us in pressing our councillors to protect tenants from the effects of the bedroom tax, beginning with a lobby of the full council meeting on Thursday, 11 April.

Swansea Anti-Cuts Campaign calls on councillors to say no to the bedroom tax and no to evictions

Swansea Anti-Cuts Campaign held a successful meeting on Wednesday to explore what practical steps campaigners could take against this blatantly unfair attack on some of the poorest in our community. The meeting heard people explain how they face impossible decisions between putting food on the table or paying their increased housing costs. More than one said that non-payment is not a choice they simply would not be able to pay.
 
We decided to take our demands to councillors, beginning with a lobby of the next full council meeting:
 
Say NO to the bedroom tax and no to evictions
Lobby of the Full Council Meeting
Thursday, 11 April, 4:30pm
Assemble at main entrance to Civic Centre

We call on our councillors to protect Council tenants affected by the bedroom tax in 2 ways:
 
1. We want the Council to re-classify properties where households will be affected by the charge reducing the number of rooms to a level where the household will not have to pay the bedroom tax.

This has already been done by other social housing landlords, including a housing association in Knowsley[i] and, in respect of 2-bedroom high rise properties, by Nottingham Council[ii].
 
2. We want the Council to give an immediate clear and public commitment that nobody in Swansea will be evicted from Council properties over non-payment of the bedroom tax.

There are a number of councils that have made a similar commitment or that are considering it, including Dundee[iii] and Brighton[iv].
 
We also call on the Council to use its influence with the Housing Associations to call on them to make the same commitments above.
 
We don’t consider that these are unreasonable demands and, in the long run, they are in the interests of social housing landlords because the bedroom tax means losing tenants as they are forced into the private renting sector, with higher rents, costing more in housing benefit.

Following the lobby we will continue to lobby both councillors and housing associations, through the press, correspondence, meetings, leafleting, visits to surgeries, until these demands are adopted.
 
Swansea Anti-Cuts Campaign  swanseanticuts@gmail.com  07963 454041
Also see the Swansea Anti-Cuts Campaign facebook group

[i] See http://www.insidehousing.co.uk/tenancies/tenants-avoid-bedroom-tax-after-knowsley-reclassifies-homes/6525752.article
[ii] See http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-nottinghamshire-21931443
[iii] http://www.thecourier.co.uk/news/local/dundee/dundee-council-s-pledge-not-to-evict-tenants-hit-by-bedroom-tax-1.76104
[iv] http://brightgreenscotland.org/index.php/2013/03/brighton-council-refuses-to-evict-over-bedroom-tax/
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