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25 June 2012

CHC responds to plans by David Cameron to stop Housing Benefit for those under 25

Nick Bennett, Group Chief Executive of Community Housing Cymru said: ‘Our members, Welsh housing associations, are working hard to implement and communicate the latest round of welfare reform changes. Housing benefit reform is already creating rises in homelessness applications and increased use of bed and breakfast accommodation. Wrexham, for example, is facing a 15 year high in homelessness acceptances and scrapping housing benefit for under 25s will only exacerbate this. We need to fully understand what the full impact of the current changes are before we instigate more and we believe that the £2bn of savings this measure is expected to deliver will be offset by costs to other budgets including social care and support.

Also, for working people in receipt of housing benefit, this measure may result in them having to give up their job to return to the family home in order to have a roof over their head. Wales will be adversely affected by these reforms compared to other UK regions due to higher levels of unemployment in Wales, with 22 applications for every one job advertised. These suggestions by David Cameron are not helpful and he''s making housing benefit for young people a political football.’

Sioned Hughes took part in Taro'r Post on BBC Radio Cymru at lunchtime and Nick Bennett will be on ITV Wales tonight. Thank you to everyone who responded to Edwina''s request for a case study.