Unite’s community activists will be fully involved in a second wave of protests against the government‘s ‘bedroom tax’, which could hit about 650,000 people, on Saturday (30 March).
The new protests come only days before the hated policy is imposed (Monday 1 April), yet it falls into further disarray with a court granting a judicial review of the government's policy and its impact on people with disabilities, and former welfare minister Frank Field calling upon local authorities to take action to allow people to stay in their homes.
Unite pledged that its members and community activists would continue the protests in the coming weeks against the ‘tax’ whose architect is the work and pensions secretary Iain Duncan Smith.
Unite general secretary Len McCluskey said: “The inconvenient truth that Iain Duncan Smith is avoiding is that 650,000 families across the UK are suffering sleepless nights because of this government’s ill-conceived plans to drive them from their homes and push them deeper into financial misery.
“This is Tory-led social engineering on a massive scale.”
Unite said that the ‘bedroom tax’ had thrown up “bizarre and illogical examples of unfairness”, such as foster carers looking after one child in social housing with a spare room have been exempted, but those who want to foster two or more siblings to keep families together look to be hit.
Len McCluskey said: “Unite will fully support communities which face being torn apart, with families being forced to move elsewhere and children being uprooted from their schools with the adverse impact on their education this will have.
“Unite will continue to pinpoint – and act upon – the increasing number of flaws that are splintering the creaky edifice of the government’s so-called welfare reforms - designed to marginalise the disadvantaged and vulnerable in our society.”
Today, Unite launched a new website called ‘Our Welfare Works’ which sets the record straight on welfare, blowing apart the myths that have been used by the government to promote its savage attack on the welfare state.
For events in particular regions, please contact Unite’s regional community co-ordinators:
Scotland: Jack Ferguson 07711 376562
North West: Sheila Coleman: 07711 375538
North East, Yorkshire and Humberside: Joe Rollin 07711 375536
East Midlands: Luke Primarolo 07717 787359
London & Eastern: Pilgrim Tucker 07970 126249
South West: Brett Sparkes 07702 874585
Details of approximately 40 bedroom tax protests which are taking place in towns and cities across the UK on Saturday
For further information please contact Unite senior communications officer Shaun Noble on 07768 693940
- Unite is Britain and Ireland’s largest trade union with 1.5 million members working across all sectors of the economy. The general secretary is Len McCluskey.