1. ITV Report

Foster carers hit by 'bedroom tax'

Hayley Woods has been fostering children for seven years. She lives in a three bedroom house in Oldham, Lancashire.

She has a ten-year-old child in her care and a second spare bedroom, ready to take another.

But from April, her bedrooms will be deemed empty, even though they may have children in them under the so called 'bedroom tax' policy being introduced by the government.

Hayley told me it was a disgrace that the very families the state relies to help some of the most vulnerable children in society, those that have been abandoned, neglected and abused should be treated this way. She says they will be invisible.

She says many foster carers she's spoken to say they will stop fostering, as they feel there is no incentive to continue. Ms Woods stands to lose around £80 a month.

The Department of Work and Pension (DWP) told me, in 2013/14 councils will be receiving £155m to support households affected by reforms.

This includes £30m for foster carers and disabled people in adapted properties.

They do not want the so called 'bedroom tax' to discourage people from being foster carers.

A DWP spokesperson said:

It's fair that we ensure social housing is used appropriately and that the state no longer pays for people to live in homes too big for their needs. However we've provided £30 million to councils to ensure that groups like foster carers and disabled people are protected.

More on this story