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Cash aid to move house for Liverpool victims of bedroom tax

Mayor Joe launches measures to help 'people being punished through no fault of their own'

Published on December 19th 2013.


Cash aid to move house for Liverpool victims of bedroom tax
 

LIVERPOOL tenants forced out of their homes due to the impact of welfare reforms are to get financial aid to move, Mayor Joe Anderson has announced.

Support will also be provided where people are being threatened with eviction due to debt, and to help with the cost of starting work. 

The measures are part of a raft of plans aimed at increasing take-up of the Liverpool Citizens Support Scheme, which replaced DWP Crisis Loans and Community Care Grants earlier this year. 

The policy will be extended so it can help with the cost of moving home as a result of benefit reductions such as the under occupation penalty (the so-called bedroom tax), which affects 11,000 tenants in Liverpool. 

Bid

Mayor Joe said: “All the evidence we have is showing that the poorest people in our city are suffering as a result of the welfare reforms and the austerity measures. 

11,000 tenants in Liverpool have been hit by bedroom tax11,000 tenants in Liverpool
have been hit by bedroom tax
“It is absolutely vital that we do all we can to support those who through no fault of their own are being punished because, for example, they live in social housing with an additional bedroom."



Up to £1 million will be provided to other organisations to bid for specific work to support the objectives of the scheme, up to a maximum of £75,000 per application. 

He added: “This is part of the council’s commitment to helping those who are most in need, which has also included setting up the Tackling Poverty Action Group, supporting food banks through the Mayor’s Hope Fund and giving £1 million to credit unions to try and stop people turning to loan sharks.” 

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Social workers, social landlords and others working with people setting up home will help promote the scheme. 

The council will also extend the use of freephone 0800 numbers to all Benefits Service calls including housing benefit, council tax support, free school meals and benefits maximisation advice. 

Since April, there have been more than 10,500 applications for funding from the Liverpool Citizens Support Scheme, with payments totaling almost 750,000. 

Separately, the council has already paid out over £1.1 million in Discretionary Housing Payments (DHP) to people affected by housing benefit reforms.

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