Oct 18 2014

Kumaran Slaps Blackman over Bedroom Tax vote

uma_kumaranHarrow East Parliamentary Candidate Uma Kumaran has slammed Conservative MP Bob Blackman for voting against making carers exempt from the Bedroom Tax yesterday.

With an estimated 26,000 carers living across the borough, Bob Blackman’s decision will hurt hundreds of families who are already working day and night to care for loved ones. Around 750 people have been hit by the Bedroom Tax in Harrow, the majority of who are registered as disabled. Nationally, there are an estimated 6.5 million unpaid family carers.

Despite Blackman’s vote against making carers exempt from the Bedroom Tax, the Bill has passed for its second reading next month.

20141018_uma_kumaranUma Kumaran said:

‘Yesterday, Bob Blackman had the chance to go to the House of Commons to vote to protect Harrow’s carers from an unfair and unjust tax. Instead, he voted to continue to make life harder for people working around the clock to care for loved ones. Even if you agree with the policy, it is simply cruel not to protect the 26,000 carers who work day and night, often unpaid, to care for others. Having met with Harrow Carers recently, I have heard firsthand about the difficulty faced by carers in our borough, and I am appalled that Bob Blackman has not taken this opportunity to help. If I’m elected next year, I will support the Labour Party policy of abolishing the Bedroom Tax.’


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  1. mike mcfadden

    First of all there is no such thing as a bedroom tax!! So how could Bob Blackman vote against it. Further, how did we get 26,000 people needing care in Harrow? Did Nu-Labour only encourage sick into the borough? Its time Labour started looking at their actions instead of blaming every one else.

  2. CamRob

    The over accommodation legislation has caused genuine hardship and forced many poor and vulnerable people into debt with no way to escape it.
    The concept is sound, no person should be paid for accommodation that is larger than they require, but the implementation is unreasonable and immoral. The reasons for this are simple, no thought is given as to whether there is smaller accommodation available, neither is whether the rent on the smaller accommodation would actually be cheaper than the rent currently paid and lastly there is little consideration as to whether it is reasonable to make someone move due to their needs\health\requirements prior to making the restriction.

    The benefit changes were solely viewed by how much money they would save government and had little regard for it’s impact. The rules should’ve been applied to new tenants and so give them a choice as to whether they accept the additional burden and also to tenants where they have been offered smaller accommodation and refused to take it or where it can be shown smaller\cheaper accommodation is available. It most certainly shouldn’t be applied to those who are tied into a tenancy or where no other option is available.

    The situation with housing benefits is that over the years since January 1989 and the deregulation of rents, the cost of renting has risen at ridiculous rates, this was compounded by the Labour Local Housing Allowance and removal of the Rent Officer Service from determining whether the rent was reasonable for the property and so gave free reign for unscrupulous landlords to push their rents up to the average for the area regardless of quality because hey knew Housing Benefits would pay it.
    Some recent changes to the LHA percentile have improved things but ultimately the way to reduce the Housing Benefit bill has to be to restrict the amount of rent a landlord can charge and not to force tenants into debt. This could be by increasing the availability of social (ie not for profit) housing or re-introducing a regulatory system to prevent Landlords from making excessive profits from too many people chasing to few properties.

  3. mike mcfadden

    In a nut-shell we don’t have a housing crisis we have a massive over population crisis that throwing money at will not help!! Once again how many people that should not be in Harrow living off tax-payers are still here? The easy answer NO benefits unless you have at least 3 years fully paid NIS. That works for every one. Benefit breading should be look upon as a crime of self neglect.

  4. Gary

    it appears Mr Blackman is unaware of the financial strain these unpaid carers would place on a dwindling central government settlement for Harrow council, maybe he should be campaigning for a more fairer settlement for Harrows residents, or is he unaware of the financial impact of removing £75 Million from Harrow Council and what devastating impacts on all residents, yet his pay bill seems to rise, and his 11% pay increase ensures his salary (tax payers Monies) is well above inflation. I hope he is proud that Harrow has food banks which is a complete disgrace in todays society, returning the country to an era we should be ashamed of i.e. work houses no state benefits for families suffering from the first and second world wars, due to people being killed fighting for the country, this is typical Tory pomposity no real understanding of working class or middle class people or people in general.

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