Portsmouth South MP joins fight to stop new ‘tax’

A soldier with the 4th Mechanised Brigade is pictured engaging the enemy during Operation Qalb in Helmand, Afghanistan. PPP-151019-121639001

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PORTSMOUTH South MP Mike Hancock has joined the fight against the government’s new ‘bedroom tax’ being introduced.

The scheme would see people on housing benefit with spare rooms in their homes have their income cut.

If they can’t afford to make up the shortfall each month then they would be moved into a smaller property. The aim is to make best use of the available space in homes.

Ministers have set aside an extra £30m for local authorities to help foster parents and the disabled pay the ‘tax’.

But Mr Hancock says it’s unfair on children who still live at home but are away serving in the armed forces – a particular problem in the Portsmouth area.

‘It’s a disaster waiting to happen,’ he said.

‘We need to reconsider this. It’s no good just passing the buck to local authorities.

‘I have a lot of service families in my constituency and it places parents in a very difficult position.’

Supporters say the ‘tax’ would free up space in the housing sector for families in need of a bigger home.