Barbara has welcomed a Court of Appeal judgement which has ruled that the Bedroom Tax unlawfully discriminates against unpaid carers. Barbara is now calling for the Conservative Government to exempt unpaid family carers from the Bedroom Tax.

The Court of Appeal’s decision comes following legal challenges to the Bedroom Tax, including a challenge by the family of a disabled teenager, which highlighted the impact of the Tax on disabled children needing overnight care.

Barbara has repeatedly criticised the Coalition and Conservative Governments for hitting unpaid carers with the Bedroom Tax. In 2014 she introduced the Carers Bedroom Entitlement (Social Housing Sector) Bill which called for exemptions for unpaid carers and those needing overnight care. The Conservative-led Government did not support the Bill.

Barbara said:

“I welcome the decision taken by the Court of Appeal to declare that the Bedroom Tax unlawfully discriminates against disabled children and their unpaid carers. This could be very good news for unpaid carers in Salford and across the country if the law is changed. The Bedroom Tax is a deeply unfair tax which has the greatest impact on the most vulnerable people in society including unpaid carers who are struggling with the extra financial burden of this unfair charge.”

“People caring for older or disabled people should not have to live with the fear of eviction or make other changes due to having to pay the Bedroom Tax. For some unpaid carers this may mean reducing the amount of food they buy or cutting back on essential utilities like gas and electricity.”

“I have campaigned to protect unpaid carers from the Bedroom Tax and I brought forward a bill in 2014 to exempt them from the charge. Government Ministers have argued that those affected by the Bedroom Tax should start work or increase their working hours in order to pay the charge, but this is not an option available to many unpaid carers.”

“I am concerned to hear that the Conservative Government is planning to appeal against the decision, however I will continue to fight against this unfair tax on behalf of unpaid carers. I am calling on the Conservative Government to accept the court’s ruling and take immediate action to exempt unpaid carers from the Bedroom Tax.”

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