Posts Tagged ‘LHA’

Labour is wrong on housing benefit

04/11/2010, 09:00:20 AM

by Peter Watt

The proposed changes to housing benefit have certainly got people fired up.  “Rightly so”, you may say. It certainly feeds our preferred narrative: a heartless government unfairly slashing that which benefits the most vulnerable. There is also no doubt that thousands of families will suffer from a loss in income and in some cases even be forced to move. The full scale and impact of the changes is unknown, but Crisis has powerfully set out the full range of the government proposals:

  • Local housing allowance (LHA) rates to be recalculated meaning 774,970 households will lose on average £468 per year;
  • 25 to 35 year-olds to be moved down to a share room rate from a one bed flat rate affecting 88,000 people;
  • Cutting housing benefit by 10% after a year on job seekers’ allowance affecting 200,000 people;
  • Index linking of LHA affecting 939,220 households to the consumer prices index;
  • LHA caps for 21,060 households will ensure that no one-bedroom property receives more than £250 in LHA, rising to £400 for a four-bedroom property or larger;
  • Non-dependent deductions will be increased from2011;
  • Limiting working age housing benefit to reflect household size;
  • Limiting total benefit claim by household to £500.

A hard hitting and tough list; so it should be an open goal for Her Majesty’s loyal opposition. Same old Tories, supported by their new supplicant mates the Lib Dems, doing what Tories do best – screwing the poor. And we are certainly putting the boot in with gusto. Ed Milliband has led with it at PMQs and the Labour blogs have been full of technically correct and eloquent arguments that the government is wrong. It is so obviously unfair, the Liberals are split on the issue and even Mayor Boris is worried about the impact. We can’t fail to miss. (more…)

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