Petitions (Closed) - Bedroom Tax

Petition details We call on the council to implement a policy to not evict tenants whose rent arrears have been caused by the ‘bedroom tax’.
The bedroom tax is fundamentally unfair and will reduce the amount of Housing Benefit paid to tenants who are deemed to have one or more ‘extra’ bedrooms, even if these bedrooms are in use. We understand that around 4,000 CEC tenants are likely to have their Housing Benefit cut. These households are already in financial hardship and simply unable to make up a shortfall caused by the bedroom tax. This will lead to rent arrears and the threat of eviction. We do not believe that anyone should be financially penalised and put out of their home simply for being deemed to have a spare bedroom.
After the council election in May 2012 the newly elected administration agreed a number of ‘Capital Coalition Pledges’ one of the most important being aimed at ‘Reducing poverty, inequality and deprivation’. However, we believe that if families are made homeless due to the bedroom tax this will directly lead to more poverty, inequality and deprivation and the destruction of communities.
We therefore call on the council to refuse to evict tenants who fall into rent arrears because their Housing Benefit has been cut as a result of the ‘bedroom tax’.
Petition Status Closed
Name of petitioner Des Loughney
Opening date 21/02/2013
Closing date 05/04/2013
Total signatories 988
Petition Outcome The Petitions Committee on 18 April 2013 agreed:

1) to refer this petition to the Health, Wellbeing & Housing Policy Development and Review Sub-Committee for information.
2) to note that this referral includes reference to the decision of the Corporate Policy & Strategy Committee at its meeting on 16 April 2013 as undernoted, the practical application of which the Petitions Committee considered to be unclear.
‘that where the Director of Services for Communities is satisfied that tenants who are subject to the under-occupancy charge have done all they reasonably could to avoid falling in to arrears’.
Further Action This petition was considered further at the Policy Development and Review Sub-Committee of the Health, Wellbeing and Housing Committee on 23 April 2013
Links Policy Development and Review Sub-Committee of the Health, Wellbeing and Housing Committee 23 April 2013