- 3 updates
The UN Special Rapporteur for housing Raquel Rolnik has apologised for using the term "bedroom tax" when she criticised what the Government has officially termed the "spare room subsidy".
In a discussion with Conservative Party chairman Grant Schapps on Channel 4 News, she said:
The chairman of the Conservative party Grant Schapps has asked the UN Secretary General to look into why one of his rapporteurs made disparaging remarks about the so-called bedroom tax months before a report on the controversial policy was due.
In a letter to Ban Ki-Moon, Mr Schapps accuses Raquel Rolnik of showing "political bias" on a fact-finding mission to the UK:
He also accuses her of taking part in a photo opportunity with a Scottish newspaper, the Daily Record, which has "actively campaigned" against the policy.
The Government's so-called "bedroom tax" is a "shocking" policy which should be scrapped, an United Nations investigator has said.
Housing benefit claimants have their benefit cut by 14% for those deemed to have one extra bedroom and 25% for claimants with two or more spare bedrooms.
In an interview with the Guardian newspaper, Raquel Rolnik, who has been on a fact-finding visit to Britain, said: "My immediate recommendation is that the bedroom tax is abolished."
"I was very shocked to hear how many people feel abused in their human rights by this decision and why - being so vulnerable - they should pay for the cost of the economic downturn, which was brought about by the financial crisis."
Ms Rolnik's visit - at the invitation of the Government - has taken in trips to London, Edinburgh, Glasgow, Belfast and Manchester.