The Bedroom Tax is neither a tax nor even a charge.

Posted 5 Mar 2013 by Walaa Idris

For weeks and weeks now, we have been told by lefties, come April, this ‘appalling heartless’ government will tax poor hard working families on their extra bedrooms! While at the same time gives tax breaks to millionaires!

Now, how does that make any sense is beyond me. Hearing it, who in their right mind will not be shocked and horrified? And that’s just it – it’s all about the shock factor, the feeling of terror and disgust for this government those words conjure up. When debate, common sense and reasoning fails the left, they always resort to shocking (their weapon of choice). It has been used over the years by Russia, China, and Cuba and is still used by North Korea and many lefty dictatorships and democracies everywhere. And now here, in Britain, under the umbrella of free speech and a ‘One Nation Labour’ shocking people is used by Miliband’s party to scare the British public into chaos and trusting them.

When in reality, the issue is very simple. Housing Benefit for social housing tenants, in the past, was paid in full for the whole property regardless of its size or occupancy. All the new reforms did is streamlining it, by paying benefits according to the entitled occupancy. For example, tenants who qualify for one bedroom only are paid for one bedroom only, if they live in a two bedroom property then they are over occupying and need to either move or subsidise the extra rent themselves. Currently over occupying private tenants in receipt of Housing Benefit, do just that, they either pay the difference out of their own pockets or downsize to an affordable accommodation and the allowed number of bedrooms. From this April social housing tenants will operate under the same guidelines and get the same treatment. They will either have to pay the difference themselves for any extra unoccupied bedrooms or downsize like the rest of the working public. The thinking behind the reforms is fairness. Equal treatment afforded to all members of the society who depend on the state to pay or subsidise their living, while at the same time reducing public spending. It’s as simple as that.

I will understand it if they (Labour) were concerned by the inconvenience caused to families for having to move, such as the availability or lack of social housing in some areas, or by the disruption and pressure caused by house hunting and moving. But to only focus their fight on the benefit, call it a ‘Bedroom Tax’ when it is not even a charge to frighten and distress an already stressed segment of the society is cruel and crass. And it says more about Labour and their desperate underhandedness than it will ever say about this government and its attempts to sort out the mess they inherited from Labour.

The politics of scaremongering is ugly and unkind; it might have worked in the past before information became readily available at every fingertip but it won’t work now. Labour needs to rethink how to reach people’s hearts and minds and remember the saying goes “You catch more flies with honey than you do with vinegar” in their case, than you do with the bogeyman.

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