“10 quids when you look out the window, 10 quids when you wake up” once said American comedian Reginald D. Hunter when joking about living expenses in London. Now such a thing seems possible with the introduction of a new tax criticized as the “bedroom tax” that will be enacted next month.
Protesters numbering over 10,000 have started to demonstrate against the new tax which comes as part of the recent government reforms.
The bedroom tax is simple: those who have a spare bedroom in their housing association home are subject to an extra 728 pound tax every year.
In addition to the 728 pound tax, individuals who receive housing support will lose 14 percent of their benefits if they have a spare room or 25 percent of their benefits if they have more than one spare room.
According to estimates, this tax may affect over 600,000 people. 95,000 people may also go below the poverty line as well.
Though the government has exempted “approved foster carers”, a few thousand disabled children and “adult children” serving in the military and living in the homes of their parents, protesters are enraged over the fact that the bedroom tax can still target the homes of individuals particularly the disabled and the ill especially if they need a spare room of their own.
Moreover, mansions and the like such as Buckingham Palace will not be affected.
Protesters are planning another round of demonstrations again in Manchester, Liverpool, Glasgow and London.