The housing and homelessness charity Shelter is warning that the already threadbare safety net is now under another attack from government. It wants people to tell Iain Duncan Smith, the Work and Pensions Secretary, to reverse this change and have even provided the system to help you do it.

At the moment says Shelter, if you lose your job, you will get your full rent paid for 13 weeks – vital breathing space to help you find a new job or move to a cheaper home, without getting into debt. But from October, the government will only pay a low standard rate regardless of your actual rent.

This means people will plunge straight into arrears and may lose their home – making it harder to get into work.

Shelter had recently pointed out that England risks becoming a 'knife-edge nation' if these rules come into effect and said that 'The changes this autumn will mean that, in over a quarter of the country, a family paying a typical rent on an average three bedroom home would need to find an extra £100 a month or more as soon as they became unemployed, or risk losing their home'.

Iain Duncan Smith by Brian Minkoff-London Pixels

Iain Duncan Smith by Brian Minkoff-London Pixels

The charity identified areas such as Manchester, Bristol, East London, Norwich and Newcastle as places where the risk is especially high.

This will also hit the landlords who come up short and have to find other resources to pay their buy-to-let mortgages as well as the local councils who will have to find extra space for those affected.

Shelter have a prepared letter and E-Mail system here [1] for people to submit their concerns to the minister.

You can even tick a box to get feedback on how the Shelter campaign is going.

Governments have now helped to keep the banks, big corporations and the mega wealthy going so it's about time they helped those at the bottom.


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