Monday, 25 October 2010

London Housing cap upsets Jon Cruddas

In The Guardian on Sunday, Jon Cruddas blasts the new Government rules on Housing Benefits as London Councils disclosed that they were block-booking bed and breakfast establishments outside the area, in Hastings, Reading and Luton, to cope with tenants who cannot afford to pay the high city rents which landlords refuse to lower.
"It is tantamount to cleansing the poor out of rich areas – a brutal and shocking piece of social engineering", Mr. Cruddas said.

Councils in the capital are warning that 82,000 families – more than 200,000 people – face losing their homes. It would be shocking indeed if ordinary, decent working people get caught up in this. But the following are some of those in London who have taken advantage of the system -and their landlords must be complicit. The blog is from 2008, has anything changed since?:

"Essma Marjam, 34, is given almost £7,000 a month in housing benefits to pay the rent on the five-bedroom villa just yards from Sir Paul McCartney's house and Lord's cricket ground.
She also receives an estimated £15,000 a year in other payouts, such as child benefit, to help look after her children, aged from five months to 14."

"HATE cleric Anjem Choudary nets £25,000 a year in benefits - £8,000 MORE than the take-home pay of soldiers fighting in Afghanistan, The Sun can reveal.
The Muslim extremist's handouts are not taxed, making his income equivalent to a £32,500 salary.
He has likened British soldiers to Nazi stormtroopers.
State handout figures leaked to The Sun show Choudary, 42, gets £15,600 a year in housing benefit - to live in a £320,000 house in Leytonstone, East London.

"Nasra Warsame's magnificent townhouse overlooks a courtyard and is in one of the most expensive areas of London.
It has four storeys, six bedrooms (some with balconies), three sitting rooms and four bathrooms - as well as a concierge service.
The property is worth a cool £1.8 million and would cost you or me nearly £1,600 a week to rent. It costs Mrs. Warsame nothing. In other words, taxpayers are picking up the £6,400-a-month bill to keep Nasra Warsame, seven of her brood and her elderly mother in the lap of luxury.
Mrs Warsame's husband and their eighth child, by the way, have been provided with a two-bedroom council flat nearby. His wife's palatial residence isn't big enough, apparently, to accommodate them all."

"Notting Hill; a £2.6million villa with wooden floors, granite work tops and roof terrace - home to single mother-of-eight Francesca Walker.
Francesca, whose mother is Jamaican, spent many years in a succession of council flats, which she claimed were virtually uninhabitable.
As a result, the council was forced to consider her as 'technically homeless'.
Unfair: 800 households in Westminster qualify for £500-a-week housing allowance, at a cost of £27.3million

"Next is a detached, double-fronted £1.2million house in Acton, West London, with three shower rooms and 'accessories' including a 50-in plasma TV, laptops, Wii, iPhone and PlayStation - home to the seven-strong Saiedi family from Afghanistan."

"Then there is the £1million mock-Tudor property, comprising two sitting rooms, conservatory and double garage, in Edgware (home to single mother-of-five Omowunmi Odia).

"Another £1million property in Barnet (home to the Connors, a family of Irish travellers).

Those are London examples, taken from This Blog

For balance, read the others outside of the capital. Are all of these the 'hard-working families' lifestyles that Jon Cruddas wishes to protect? Perhaps he'd like to pay the shortfall in their benefits, rather than the people who do work to pay them.

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