So it’s official; Housing Benefit changes have hit Wales the hardest. No surprise there you might say. The duplicitous Liberal Democrats had another chance to vote against it last month but refused. Not surprising as their Pensions Minister was the architect and promoter of the plan.
The Auditor General for Wales’s survey shows rent arrears and debt is mounting following its introduction and there are fears in the report that the situation could get “much worse” when tenants are paid housing benefits direct, rather than the money being paid to their landlord. Disabled claimants are often involved and they have also had to deal with disastrous introduction of the new PIP scheme and the incompetence of the now infamous ATOS assessments.
There is no compassion in the Tory and Liberal Democrat policies that bring about these problems for people and no sympathy or real interest in supporting Local Authorities and Housing Associations in helping to provide social housing. They cry crocodile tears and bang on about ‘fairness’ and ‘localism’ but at the same time rip millions out of the local economy and see individuals punished. The alternatives are lining up for you at the General Election in May.
I hope you and all your family and friends have all registered to vote. Public School Boys like Nigel Farage and his dog-whistle populists; like ‘snake oil’ salesmen, nonsensically promise you that exiting the EU will solve every ill you have. The Tories are saying more of the same and worse – back to 1938 pre-NHS public spending. The separatist Nationalists, Greens and duplicitous Lib Dems all want power by ‘accident’ of a hung parliament and more Coalition Government so they can, again, promise one thing but do another.
A majority Labour Government was needed in 1945 to set up our NHS and tackle housing and in the centenary year of the death of Keir Hardie, we need that again.