1. ITV Report

Protests against bedroom tax

Those living in social housing who are deemed to have a spare bedroom will be asked to downsize or face a cut in benefits from April. Photo: PA

Hundreds of people across the North West are expected to join protests against the so called 'bedroom tax' this weekend.

Rallies will be held all over the region including in Liverpool, Manchester, Wigan and Chester.

It's claimed the tax will hit the poor, vulnerable and disabled the hardest. The change will affects council tenants and housing association tenants who claim housing benefits.

The government estimates that around 655,000 households will be affected and have their benefit cut from April 1st. They will be judged on what living space they actually need rather than what they currently have. If a tenant is deemed to have a 'spare room', the amount of rent eligible for housing benefit will be cut by 14%. If they have two or more spare rooms, the cut will be 25%.

Those who cannot afford the shortfall will be asked to move in order to reduce the number of people on housing waiting lists.

The government says that will mean an average loss of about £14 a week for council tenants.

Click here to read more about the tax and how it affects people in our region.

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