People with disabilities in the West Midlands could be severely affected by changes to the benefits system, a housing association has warned. Bromford Group said people in social housing would lose a portion of their benefits if they had spare rooms. The group said the changes were due to be introduced in April.

The Department for Work and Pensions said the changes were about “restoring fairness to a system which has spiralled out of control”.

Darrin Gamble, from the Bromford Group, said customers with disabilities who make use of a spare bedroom in their home would be “unfairly” affected. He said: “We want our customers to understand how they will be affected. With the ‘bedroom tax’ those with a spare room will have their benefits reduced so they’ll have to choose to either pay the extra amount to stay in their accommodation or move.”

Some of the changes, which will affect those who work and live in council or housing association homes, will start in April under the Welfare Reform Act. A statement from the government said: “Our reforms are not designed to force people out of their homes.

Source: BBC NEWS – Birmingham & Black Country

Link: http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-19462093

3rd September 2012

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