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Church speaks out against bedroom tax evictions

By agency reporter
May 24, 2013

The Church of Scotland says people should not be evicted from their homes because of the new changes to housing dubbed the ‘bedroom tax’.

The Kirk's hurch and Society Council, discussing the issue on 23 May, agreed to lobby the Scottish Government to introduce legislation to prevent evictions because of the new rules which have recently been imposed by the UK Government.

Council convener, the Rev Sally Foster-Fulton, declared: “No-one who is making a genuine effort to pay their council tax should be put out onto the streets because of these benefit changes."

“This may be a UK Government policy but as a national Church in Scotland, we must do as much as we can to protect the poor, weak and vulnerable living here. There are too many well documented cases where people such as carers are being penalised under this iniquitous and devious new form of benefit cut," she said.

The Assembly agreed to: "Note the measures which the Scottish Government has taken to alleviate the hardship caused by the welfare reforms and urge the Scottish Government to introduce legislation to ensure that no council tenants shall be evicted for Bedroom Tax arrears, where the Director of Housing is satisfied that affected tenants are doing all they can reasonably be expected to in order to avoid falling into arrears."

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The General Assembly of the Church of Scotland is meeting in Edinburgh from 18-24 May 2013. Ekklesia co-director Simon Barrow and consultant Carla J Roth are there all week, reporting, liaising and commenting.

* Ekklesia reports and commentary from the 2013 Kirk General Assembly, plus those from 2012 and 2011: http://www.ekklesia.co.uk/kirkgeneralassembly

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