Members of Waltham Forest Trade Unionist and Socialist Coalition picketed the council's housing office this week

Sandra Sharpe outside the council's housing office.

Sandra Sharpe outside the council's housing office.

First published in News This Is Local London: Photograph of the Author by , Reporter

Protesters picketed the council’s housing office this week in opposition to the so-called bedroom tax.

Members of the Waltham Forest Trade Unionist and Socialist Coalition (TUSC) want the council to defend vulnerable people and low-paid workers against “vicious Tory policies”.

They demand no evictions for the non-payment of the bedroom tax or arrears that have arisen due to austerity measures.

They say the Labour council has claimed to be opposed to the tax but has “carried it through to the letter”.

One campaigner and Waltham Forest resident, Sandra Sharpe, says she is willing to be re-housed in a smaller property rather than being moved away from her family, friends and support network.

She has vowed not to pay the £1,000 debt she has accumulated as a result of the tax.

Ms Sharpe, who uses a wheelchair, said: “They’re going to have to drag me out by my wheelchair.

“I have written to (councillor responsible for housing) Marie Pye, I have written to John Cryer, I have even written to David Cameron himself.

“It appears no one wants to help me. I’m not going anywhere until I’m found a property that allows me to live with dignity as a disabled person."

Comments (10)

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12:47pm Sun 9 Feb 14

John J C Moss says...

According to an answer I got from the Council in November, of the 702 households affected by the under-occupancy restrictions, only 178 had asked to be moved.
According to an answer I got from the Council in November, of the 702 households affected by the under-occupancy restrictions, only 178 had asked to be moved. John J C Moss
  • Score: -7

1:23pm Sun 9 Feb 14

Alan_1976 says...

John J C Moss wrote:
According to an answer I got from the Council in November, of the 702 households affected by the under-occupancy restrictions, only 178 had asked to be moved.
How many were moved of the 178? If there is no smaller property for them to move to...
[quote][p][bold]John J C Moss[/bold] wrote: According to an answer I got from the Council in November, of the 702 households affected by the under-occupancy restrictions, only 178 had asked to be moved.[/p][/quote]How many were moved of the 178? If there is no smaller property for them to move to... Alan_1976
  • Score: 10

2:46pm Sun 9 Feb 14

Brisbane says...

Can we please stop referring to this as a "tax". It is manifestly not a tax, but a reduction in benefits.
Can we please stop referring to this as a "tax". It is manifestly not a tax, but a reduction in benefits. Brisbane
  • Score: 7

4:44pm Sun 9 Feb 14

Villagecranberry says...

Alan_1976 wrote:
John J C Moss wrote:
According to an answer I got from the Council in November, of the 702 households affected by the under-occupancy restrictions, only 178 had asked to be moved.
How many were moved of the 178? If there is no smaller property for them to move to...
?
[quote][p][bold]Alan_1976[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]John J C Moss[/bold] wrote: According to an answer I got from the Council in November, of the 702 households affected by the under-occupancy restrictions, only 178 had asked to be moved.[/p][/quote]How many were moved of the 178? If there is no smaller property for them to move to...[/p][/quote]? Villagecranberry
  • Score: -6

9:03pm Sun 9 Feb 14

Villagecranberry says...

I am glad the reports to it being a 'so called bedroom tax'. First ever true report. As for this lady, she is obviously a genuine case and example of a victim of all the fraudulent claims which gave rise to the greater scrutiny. Each case must be assessed on their own merit of course but the overriding concern must be to give claimants the benefit of any doubt.
I am glad the reports to it being a 'so called bedroom tax'. First ever true report. As for this lady, she is obviously a genuine case and example of a victim of all the fraudulent claims which gave rise to the greater scrutiny. Each case must be assessed on their own merit of course but the overriding concern must be to give claimants the benefit of any doubt. Villagecranberry
  • Score: -10

7:34am Mon 10 Feb 14

OngarRS says...

Brisbane wrote:
Can we please stop referring to this as a "tax". It is manifestly not a tax, but a reduction in benefits.
Totally agree - it is not a "tax" but a reduction in benefits. Please get this straight. Funny though, you don't seem to see many east Europeans complaining - they are just getting on with working. Living on the social seems to be a luxury reserved for whingers like Ms. Sharpe.
[quote][p][bold]Brisbane[/bold] wrote: Can we please stop referring to this as a "tax". It is manifestly not a tax, but a reduction in benefits.[/p][/quote]Totally agree - it is not a "tax" but a reduction in benefits. Please get this straight. Funny though, you don't seem to see many east Europeans complaining - they are just getting on with working. Living on the social seems to be a luxury reserved for whingers like Ms. Sharpe. OngarRS
  • Score: -4

12:26pm Mon 10 Feb 14

stickmanny says...

Only people I see whinging are you (as usual) and John "I'm alright Jack" Moss.

We can argue about the merits of this policy but applying it to existing claimants was a shameless act for which IDS and his fellow fascists will be held to account at the next election.

If you don't like society do us all a favour and stop living in it.
Only people I see whinging are you (as usual) and John "I'm alright Jack" Moss. We can argue about the merits of this policy but applying it to existing claimants was a shameless act for which IDS and his fellow fascists will be held to account at the next election. If you don't like society do us all a favour and stop living in it. stickmanny
  • Score: -3

12:53pm Mon 10 Feb 14

OngarRS says...

stickmanny wrote:
Only people I see whinging are you (as usual) and John "I'm alright Jack" Moss.

We can argue about the merits of this policy but applying it to existing claimants was a shameless act for which IDS and his fellow fascists will be held to account at the next election.

If you don't like society do us all a favour and stop living in it.
The policy is sound - if you have rooms you don't need, then don't expect others to subsidise you: what is wrong with that? The only fascist is you trying to stifle arguments by, effectively, telling me to top myself. If I did, there would be less money for the spongers to live on.
[quote][p][bold]stickmanny[/bold] wrote: Only people I see whinging are you (as usual) and John "I'm alright Jack" Moss. We can argue about the merits of this policy but applying it to existing claimants was a shameless act for which IDS and his fellow fascists will be held to account at the next election. If you don't like society do us all a favour and stop living in it.[/p][/quote]The policy is sound - if you have rooms you don't need, then don't expect others to subsidise you: what is wrong with that? The only fascist is you trying to stifle arguments by, effectively, telling me to top myself. If I did, there would be less money for the spongers to live on. OngarRS
  • Score: -3

3:14pm Mon 10 Feb 14

Garrow says...

Although I can see the sense of reducing someone's benefits for rooms they don't need, I have to say that I don't think the Government have applied this in the right way. Disabled people are not exempt from this benefit cut even if they live in an adapted property, that seems crazy. If they moved the new property would have to be adapted and that would cost thousands of pounds, you've got to save a lot of money to make that financially sensible. I understand that people can appeal, but I don't know how far that would get someone when the rules are so specific. On a personal note, we have frequently thought that it would be nice to have another bedroom, particularly as the children of got older but we just haven't been able to afford it and I also would have liked to have had another child, but again money was a factor. I cannot sympathise with people that seem to feel it is their right to live in a property which is bigger than they need when other people are paying for it.
Although I can see the sense of reducing someone's benefits for rooms they don't need, I have to say that I don't think the Government have applied this in the right way. Disabled people are not exempt from this benefit cut even if they live in an adapted property, that seems crazy. If they moved the new property would have to be adapted and that would cost thousands of pounds, you've got to save a lot of money to make that financially sensible. I understand that people can appeal, but I don't know how far that would get someone when the rules are so specific. On a personal note, we have frequently thought that it would be nice to have another bedroom, particularly as the children of got older but we just haven't been able to afford it and I also would have liked to have had another child, but again money was a factor. I cannot sympathise with people that seem to feel it is their right to live in a property which is bigger than they need when other people are paying for it. Garrow
  • Score: 4

5:50pm Mon 10 Feb 14

Alan_1976 says...

OngarRS wrote:
stickmanny wrote:
Only people I see whinging are you (as usual) and John "I'm alright Jack" Moss.

We can argue about the merits of this policy but applying it to existing claimants was a shameless act for which IDS and his fellow fascists will be held to account at the next election.

If you don't like society do us all a favour and stop living in it.
The policy is sound - if you have rooms you don't need, then don't expect others to subsidise you: what is wrong with that? The only fascist is you trying to stifle arguments by, effectively, telling me to top myself. If I did, there would be less money for the spongers to live on.
If you give someone accommodation and don't give them an alternative to move to when they request it (because there are not available smaller properties) then it is not a reasonable implementation.

The policy is sound. The implementation is a crock of the proverbial.
[quote][p][bold]OngarRS[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]stickmanny[/bold] wrote: Only people I see whinging are you (as usual) and John "I'm alright Jack" Moss. We can argue about the merits of this policy but applying it to existing claimants was a shameless act for which IDS and his fellow fascists will be held to account at the next election. If you don't like society do us all a favour and stop living in it.[/p][/quote]The policy is sound - if you have rooms you don't need, then don't expect others to subsidise you: what is wrong with that? The only fascist is you trying to stifle arguments by, effectively, telling me to top myself. If I did, there would be less money for the spongers to live on.[/p][/quote]If you give someone accommodation and don't give them an alternative to move to when they request it (because there are not available smaller properties) then it is not a reasonable implementation. The policy is sound. The implementation is a crock of the proverbial. Alan_1976
  • Score: 5

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