'Bedroom tax' cited after suicide

The Coalition's so-called bedroom tax has been called into question after the family of a woman who blamed the Government for her death in a suicide note said she was struggling to cope with paying the controversial spare room subsidy.

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Neighbour calls for more support over 'bedroom tax'

A neighbour of Stephanie Bottrill has said there must be more support in place for vulnerable people affected by the "bedroom tax".

Deborah, who declined to give her full name, said local residents had raised a collection to help pay for Ms Bottrill's funeral on Saturday.

"She spoke to us over the fence and said they'd offered her three places; one was a flat which was no good to her because of her condition, one was in Shirley and wasn't near a bus stop, and another was in Alton, further away," she said.

"I think, because she loved her garden, the thought of moving away from her friends and into something like a one-bed bungalow has had that effect," Deborah added.

"We're professional people, and I understand the underlying reasons why you need the bedroom tax," she said. "But there should be support in place - like a key worker or a housing officer - to say to these people who are having to move 'are you happy? do you understand?' and to give them support."

Samaritans is available for anyone in any type of distress on 08457 90 90 90 in the UK or visit their website www.samaritans.org

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