Reform of the spare room subsidy

I’m one of the signatories on this letter in today’s Independent – and hopefully the policy will be debated at the Liberal Democrat spring conference in Liverpool tomorrow:

We, the undersigned Liberal Democrat prospective parliamentary candidates and activists have championed reform of the bedroom tax in the Liberal Democrat manifesto.

Andrew George MP’s Affordable Housing Bill, which the right-wing Conservatives refused to support, proposes removing all under-occupancy charges in social housing for the most vulnerable and those most in need. This includes protecting those with disabilities, those who have carers, joint custody of their children or families in the Army.

We are also pleased to support revoking the under-occupancy charge (the bedroom tax), so it will only apply to new tenancies going forward.

The under-occupancy levy was introduced in private rented sector in the early 2000s, and it is logical to apply this to new tenancies for social housing, but not where people would be left without food or shelter.

Kelly-Marie Blundell
Parliamentary Candidate for Guildford and others (full list here)

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