More than twice as many families in one London borough will be hit by the £26,000 benefits cap as in the whole of Birmingham, it was revealed today.
Well, blow me down! Who’da thunk it?
Minister for children and families Sarah Teather, who is Liberal Democrat MP for Brent Central, has warned that the cap could force people out of their homes and was absent during the key votes on the welfare reforms.
It was so important, she was elsewhere when it was decided?
The figures from the Department for Work and Pensions also appear to undermine claims that the cap could lead to an exodus from central London to outer boroughs.
Four out of six areas that will be worse hit than Birmingham are outer London boroughs.
I bet I can name them…
They are Brent, Ealing with 2,200 households affected, Enfield 2,200 and Newham 2,100. The other two boroughs are Westminster, 2,800, and Tower Hamlets, 1,700.
I was right!
A DWP source said: “The cap is there to restore fairness to the system that has spiralled out of control.”These figures show that it is simply not the case that families on benefits will be forced out of parts of central London as some people claim. It does show, that benefit claimants, like those who work, will face decisions about where they want to live based on what they can afford.”
It does seem to me as if those last two sentances are contradicting each other sslightly…
Town halls in London have called for the cap to be “regionalised” to lessen its impact on the capital.Ministers have argued that some people may have to move but expect them to be able to find other accommodation in the same or a neighbouring borough.
London being a big place, there’s a lot of ‘neighbouring boroughs’ within travelling distance.
An impact assessment of the reforms showed 17 boroughs will see more than 1,000 households affected including Barnet, Camden, Westminster, Croydon, Hackney, Hammersmith & Fulham, Haringey, Harrow, Islington, Kensington and Chelsea, Redbridge and Wandsworth.
It’ll be interesting to see how this plays out…