Data from 107 local authorities across the UK, shows 86,000 households have been forced to look for one-bedroom homes, of which only 33,000 have become available in the past year.
Inverclyde said 1,100 households would need to move into one-bedroom homes – of which just 96 had been free to rent last year.
The UK government's impact assessment last summer warned that 35% of claimants affected "would be quite or very likely to fall into arrears if their housing benefit were to be reduced". They went on to say that those losing out could make up the shortfall by "moving into employment, working more hours, or taking in a lodger".
So, what I would ask is that someone from the UK government, which is clearly so knowledgeable about these matters, should go to Inverclyde and explain the situation.
I realise of course that it is not the fault of the current UK government that Scotland did not overturn the "right to buy" legislation in 1999, when it could have, and direct councils to rebuild a stock of housing for the population that they are paid to serve, but it would be interesting to see them being 'better together' on this policy. The current government has taken these steps and building of social housing, no longer for sale, is underway. However, it is too little and much too late.
But, as London have their hands on the bulk of the economic levers, the pulling of which might ameliorate the employment (or unemployment) situation, they may be able to explain where all these jobs (into which distressed householders could move) are to be found. I should come with a prepared list if I were them, because I doubt that the local jobcentre has any idea where they are, and local jobseekers will be most interested.
Maybe they would explain too, the best method of approach to ask your boss for extra hours to meet the exigencies of your own familial situation. Should these extra hours simply be provided by the employer by way of his/her generosity, or should a colleague lose some of their hours to compensate. (Warning: Supplementary questions might arise as to how one chooses which colleague to deprive of hours.)
Finally, the UK government minister might want to give a personal and written guarantee (countersigned by several witnesses) that they have repealed the law which expressly forbids the tenant of social housing subletting all or part of their allotted property, and that the tenant may now do that with the blessing of aforementioned minister.
Anyone from Westminster up for that...in Inverclyde... tomorrow maybe?
How odd. There was I thinking that they were there to serve.