Court challenge on ‘panic room' housing benefit change
- 19 Nov
Lawyers are set to argue that changes to housing benefit should not apply to people whose spare room has been converted into a safe refuge to protect them from violent ex-partners.
The High Court is set to consider a judicial review challenge into what critics call the "bedroom tax", reports the BBC.
Ministers say that millions of pounds have been made available to allow for council help.
One woman being used for the case, known as "A" has been violently assaulted by an ex-partner and is now part of a Sanctuary Scheme. This means that she and her son live in a three-bedroom home in which one room is specially adapated as a safe and secure space by police.
Due to the benefit changes, the bedroom tax, A has had her housing benefit deducted by 14%.
The woman's solicitor Rebekah Carrier says about 300 similar households are affected.
"These changes to housing benefit are having a catastrophic impact upon vulnerable people across the country," she said.
"Our client's life is at risk and she is terrified. She lives in a property which has been specially adapted by the police, at great expense, to protect her and her child. It is ridiculous that she is now being told she must move to another property, where she will not have any of these protections, or else take in a lodger. She is a vulnerable single parent who has been a victim of rape and assault. The secretary of state cannot seriously suggest that it is appropriate for her to take a stranger into her home."
The claim is being supported by domestic violence charity Women's Aid.
Work and Pensions Secretary Iain Duncan Smith is defending the claim, having unsuccessfully argued at a hearing in June that it should be dismissed.
The government says it has made nearly £350m available for local authorities to help in such cases.
What do you think of this? Tweet us your comments @suppsolutions
Image source: http://www.freeimages.com/photo/1080946
- 08 Sep
People in Leeds call to tackle domestic violence
Leaders from private, public and third sectors gathered for the Voice of Leeds Summit and discussed what they could do to tackle domestic violence, reports the Yorkshire Evening Post.Over the past...
- 04 Sep
Plans to tackle domestic violence in Bury
Research by Bury Council’s domestic violence and abuse steering group has found that there was an average of ten incidents a day in the past year from April 2015, reports the Bury Times.Town hall...
- 28 Aug
Domestic violence levels in Northern Ireland at highest
Police have said that the number of reports of domestic violence are continuing to rise, and from April 2014 to April 2015 there was a 5.6% increase, report U TV. Ulster University is set to release...
- 16 Jul
Welfare reforms could make it harder for domestic violence victims to leave their homes
Service director for Newcastle Women’s Aid Elaine Langshawe has said that welfare reforms are making it harder for domestic violence victims to leave their partners, reports the Chronicle Live.Ms...
- 15 Jul
Support for domestic violence survivors provided by local charities
A contract worth £1.2m a year has been obtained by Women’s Aid Integrated Services, Nottinghamshire Women’s Aid and Equation, reports Impact Nottingham. This contract uses funds from...
- 13 Jul
New fund to support victims of domestic violence
The fund will be open to proposals from local partnerships that show how the needs of victims are able to be met in innovative ways, reports 24dash. It has also been revealed that there will be a...
- 03 Jul
Domestic violence campaign launched in Sandwell
Run by charity Fry Housing Trust, Sandwell Council and Sandwell’s Domestic Abuse Strategic Partnership, the ‘Brighter Futures’ scheme will be running over the next two years, reports ITV...
- 24 Jun
Wolverhampton police see thousands of domestic violence reports
It has been reported that an average of sixteen incidents of domestic violence were recorded each day in Wolverhampton over the last year, reports the Express and Star.Of the 5,900 incidents reported...
- 15 Jun
UK’s approach to domestic violence called ‘incoherent’
A leaked copy of an official report by the UN special rapporteur on violence against women, Rashida Manjoo, has called for an urgent inquiry into Yarl’s Wood and a focus on repeated allegations...
- 10 Jun
Domestic violence to be highlighted in new film by students and police in Sunderland
The first year media students and third year drama students at the University of Sunderland have created four short films that cover financial, emotional, physical and sexual forms of domestic abuse,...
Responding to the DWP Consultation: Housing Benefit Reform - Supported Housing "I thought this briefing was very good and very useful. The presentation was clear, well argued and I always find Michael gives me food for thought even if I don't agree with everything he says. I really like the way he facilitates a discussion in the room and I learn as much from other participants as I do from the presenter which is always good. Right length, right tone." R.P. - Richmond Fellowship