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Bedroom tax is 'wicked' MP tells Cumbrian protest rally

More than 50 people attended a rally in Workington town centre today to protest against the proposed bedroom tax.

Bedroom tax rally
Bedroom tax rally in Workington

Organised by town councillor Denise Coe and Allerdale councillor Barbara Cannon, the rally heard from Workington MP Sir Tony Cunningham, Allerdale council leader Alan Smith and councillor Michael Heaslip.

It was one of 55 protest events happening at the same time across Britain, organised by the Labour Left think tank.

Protestors held up placards saying "axe the tax" and "scrap the bedroom tax".

The Government plans to introduce welfare reforms next month which could affect many people across West Cumbria, including social housing tenants.

Some may face a choice between a cut in benefits, if they are deemed to have a spare bedroom, or moving to a smaller home.

Sir Tony said: "Initially I described the plan as mad but I have changed my mind - it's a wicked plan because the Government knows the harm it will do and the fear it has created.

"I see that fear in the faces of the people who come to see me."

More than a hundred people signed a petition against the bedroom tax.

Danielle Leigh, 20, of Coronation Crescent, Distington, was one.

She said: "I live in a two-bedroom house by myself, near my family. There are no one-bedroom places in Distington for me to move to. I don't want to leave the village.

"I work part-time in a low-paid job and have worked out that this tax will now leave me £10 a week to live off. Thats why I'm against the tax."

Andrew Richardson, 37, of Kirklea, Little Broughton, is a self-employed dad-of-two.

He said: "The Government has turned its back on me and people like me. I'm working hard for a living to put food on the table and all this tax will do is take the food out of my children's mouths."

Coun Cannon said she was pleased with the turn-out. She added: "We organised this in a very short space of time. I'm sure if we had had longer to organise it, the town centre would have been jammed.

"We have a flat-lining economy and this is an attack on working people. It's time we stand united and say no."

Protestor David Moore, 35, of Camerton, said: "The Government is penalising working people while the rich get richer staying in their mansions. It's not right and is important we protest."

Have your say

this bedroom tax is going to turn out to be a complete shambles, i myself am a single tenant who suffers with severe disabilitys i live in a 3 bedroom property which i had 18 years ago on medical grounds to be closer to my family. due to my epleptic fits, and all my other medical problems i have at to have a disabled shower fitted and extra hand rail . etc it as taken me 18 years to build my home up the way i want it and now cameron exspects me to pay 25% rent for my spare rooms. attack the poor again sad. as it is at the moment i get the minimum amount that the law saiz you need to live on so if they say you need that amount to live on how can they take 14% or 25% off you as you are not getting what they say you need to live on then. they are going back on there word. i worked it out i get £101 per week before you start out of that you,ve got to pay £20.00 eletric per week / £20.00 gas per week via token metre. plus £5.50 water per week as ive got water metre. £25.00 bedroom tax charge per week. thats £75.00 gone already. that leaves me £26.00 per week to get food for the week which now cost £34 and that is buying the smart price stuff cant get cheaper than that. and there,s plenty more things aswell needing to be payed. its 1 law for the rich and 1 law for the poor and its the poor that is always going to be hit sadly. considering the council aint got 1 bedroom or 2 bedroom flats or houses to give out there is going to be alot of tenants going to become homeless as they are going to be breaking there tenancy agreement by not paying there rent as they cant afford it.due to bedroom tax at the moment my rent is £80 per week thats what it costs the goverment which i think is alot cheaper than £4000/ to £5000/ per week in prison because what is going to happen soon so many are going to lose there homes become homeless have nothing to lose and start commiting crimes to get into prison where you seem to be treated alot better your food is done for you , got a gym when you want it, doctors on call , central heating payed for and letric no house bills. so why live outside when you can have a life like that for £4000 to £5000 per week which goverment does,nt mind paying for. mad hope they see sence an PUT A STOP TO BEDROOM TAX.

Posted by dean davies on 26 March 2013 at 15:51

****Amanda Tapping-Carter

Can you substantiate your argument?

Can you back it up?

Posted by Charlie Dowthwaite on 25 March 2013 at 21:53

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