One of Britain’s largest unions has called on Labour to push for a parliamentary vote to end the ‘obscene’ Bedroom Tax once and for all.
The call comes after Liberal Democrat president Tim Farron withdrew the party’s support for bedroom tax, following a damning report by the Work and Pensions Committee which slammed the widely hated housing policy for causing “severe hardship and distress” to “vulnerable groups”.
Unite has described the Liberal Democrat U-turn as “shameless hypocrisy”, because the party supported the conservatives in voting in the bedroom tax in 2013.
These words have been echoed by Labour’s Shadow Welfare Reform Minister Chris Bryant who said:
“You can’t trust a word the Lib Dems say. They have had chance after chance to vote against the unfair bedroom tax, but they voted it in and voted to keep it ever since. Tim Farron must think the British public have no memory. The Lib Dems could have joined the Labour Party and voted the bedroom tax down, but they backed their Tory pals all the way. This shameless and hypocritical attempt to dodge responsibility for their record won’t fool anyone.
“The Bedroom Tax has been a complete disaster and the government should scrap it. If they don’t the next Labour government will.”
Unite will be staging three ‘major demonstrations’ against the bedroom tax on Saturday 5 April, which marks the first anniversary of the coalition government’s introduction of the controversial policy.
Unite assistant general secretary Steve Turner said:
“The so-called ‘bedroom tax’ is obscene – it brought nothing, but hardship and suffering to the already vulnerable and should be scrapped immediately.
“Labour should call for an immediate vote in the House following the Lib Dems’ hypocritical, but welcome U-turn on a failed, sick policy and get this obscene tax repealed now.
“Unite is urging people to mobilise in large numbers for the demonstrations in Cardiff, Leeds and London – sending a deafening message to work and pensions secretary Iain Duncan Smith that his policy is unwanted, unwarranted and ideologically bankrupt.