Birmingham council slam welfare

There's been a surge in the number of people in Birmingham who need help paying their rent since the government's recent welfare reforms.

Birmingham City Council criticise government welfare reforms

There has been a surge in the number of people in Birmingham who need help paying their rent since the government's recent welfare reforms.

There were protests against cuts to benefits across the Midlands last month. In the first two weeks of April Birmingham City Council received almost 2,000 applications for Discretionary Housing Payments - 50% more than for the whole of the first quarter of the previous financial year.

Councillor John Cotton says the reforms are making some people's lives worse.

Rise in people needing help to pay rent

There has been a large rise in the number of people in Birmingham needing help to pay their rent Credit: Dominic Lipinski/PA Wire/Press Association Images

People in Birmingham are finding it harder to afford their rent following Government welfare reforms, according to Birmingham City Council.

There were almost 2,000 applications for help to pay for housing in the first two weeks of April - immediately after the Spare Room Subsidy or "Bedroom Tax" was introduced.

Discretionary Housing Payments were introduced in 2001 so local authorities could provide short-term payments to people facing problems with their housing costs. The Council says the system is struggling to cope.

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