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Clydesdale MSP, Aileen Campbell has hit out at the Westminster Government over the forthcoming ‘Bedroom Tax’ which comes into force at the beginning of April.

The so-called ‘Bedroom Tax’ which is part of the Tory-Lib Dem coalition’s welfare reforms, will see social tenants who are renting a property with spare bedrooms, being forced to pay more.

The tax has been widely condemned by a range of charities and housing organisations who believe it ignores the reality that many tenants require spare rooms including single parents with part-time access to their children and carers for respite. And the Scottish Government’s Minister for Housing and Welfare, Margaret Burgess has predicted that over 100,000 Scottish households and nearly 5,000 residents in South Lanarkshire will be affected by the UK Government’s ‘bedroom tax’.

It has also provoked fierce debate among Scotland’s politicians, with Angus Robertson MP revealing at Westminster that 82% of Scottish MPs voted against the Coalition’s ‘tax’ during its passage through the House of Commons, leading many in Scotland to label it the Conservative’s new Poll tax. Moreover, Labour’s opposition to the ‘bedroom tax’ has been called into question by the SNP after the party called for the Scottish Government to build smaller social houses to deal with the impact of the ‘bedroom tax’, despite the changes due to be implemented in just over a month.

Commenting, Aileen Campbell said:

"I am deeply concerned that recently published figures show 36% of housing benefit recipients in South Lanarkshire will be punished by the UK Government’s ill-advised and unfair housing benefit reform.

"I am dealing with constituents who are struggling with benefit cuts and are now worried about the impact the bedroom tax will have on them and their families.

"It is disappointing that the Labour Party, instead of standing up to the Tories new Poll tax, have decided that the best way to tackle the huge problems the bedroom tax will bring is to criticise the Scottish Government!

"The Coalition’s damaging welfare reforms and their scant regard for the views of people living in Scotland, and the fact that so many Scottish MPs opposed this tax shows that key decisions affecting Scotland should be taken by the Scottish Parliament."

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Aileen Campbell MSP, Kirkton Chambers, 12 Kirkton Street, Carluke ML8 4AB • 01555 750 249 • This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

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