A look back at the startling failure of the bedroom tax

Benefit tales

Yesterday’s ruling should see the policy abolished

To those who have campaigned against the so-called ‘bedroom tax’ from the beginning, Wednesday’s decision by the appeal court to rule the policy discriminatory and unlawful will come as no surprise. To those who continue to defend the policy, this ruling should act as a stark reminder of its remarkable failure.

When it was first introduced by the coalition government in 2013, the bedroom tax aimed to cut the welfare bill and free up in-demand housing. The policy works by cutting the benefits tenants receive by 14% if they have one spare bedroom and a staggering 25 per cent if they have two or more.

At first, it may seem reasonable to some to cut people’s benefits if they are living in a house with one or more spare bedrooms. The idea is that this significant reduction in income will encourage the occupant…

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