Housing Benefit and Universal Credit in the Social Housing Sector (Regular Payments)

Part of the debate – in the House of Commons at 1:36 pm on 12th February 2014.

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Photo of Chris Bryant Chris Bryant Shadow Minister (Work and Pensions) 1:36 pm, 12th February 2014

On a point of order, Mr Speaker. I do not know whether you noticed, because you are blind in some of these matters—deliberately so—but the Tory Whips were standing outside the Chamber during the Division and persuading Conservative Members not to vote, so we on the Opposition side of the House hope that that means that they have changed their minds and will get rid of the bedroom tax as soon as possible. If they will not, we will.

My point of order relates to the bedroom tax. Mr Speaker, you will recall that earlier this year, when asked how many people had been affected by the loophole in the bedroom tax legislation, the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, a Member of this House, said that the number was between 3,000 and 5,000. In a written answer, the Minister of State, Esther McVey, also a Member of this House, said that she did not know how many had been affected. Lord Freud, a Minister in another place, said that it was an insignificant number. Today, however, he told the Work and Pensions Committee of this House that the number was 5,000. We have been doing their work for them, and from freedom of information requests to local authorities in England, Wales and Scotland, we already know, from just the third that replied, of 16,000 cases. I know that there is a means whereby a Minister in this House can correct the record, but how can a Minister in the other House correct the record in this House?


Richard Taylor
Posted on 13 Feb 2014 12:05 pm (Report this annotation)

Cambridge MP Julian Huppert tweeted following the vote to say:

"Labour engineered a vote by shouting against their own motion, otherwise it would have passed with no vote."