Almost 6,000 households in Northamptonshire could have to pay ‘bedroom tax’ on their current home, the Labour Party claims.
The figures are compiled by the National Housing Federation and issued by Labour, suggest a total of 5,860 people living in council homes will have their housing benefit cut by up to 25 per cent.
The charge is designed to encourage council tenants with a ‘spare’ room, to move into smaller homes, freeing up the property for potential tenants on the local authority waiting list.
But the has been accused of penalising couples who sleep in separate rooms for health reasons or parents whose children are away serving in the Army.
The breakdown by constituency said 1,136 homes would be affected in Corby, 711 in Daventry, 737 in Kettering 757 in Northampton North, 866 in Northampton South, 708 in South Northamptonshire and 945 in Welingborough.
Councillor Terry Wire, leader of the Labour group on Northampton Borough Council, said: “This is could be a fairly bleak summer for many families and residents worried about being forced to find more rent this year to pay for homes they have lived in for many years and often raised a family in.
“There are also those who may have to think of moving from their home to a smaller one because they cannot afford to pay the difference.
“For some it may also mean they get into arrears with their rent, which potentially makes them vulnerable to loan sharks.
“At the same time as the bedroom tax we have the changes in council tax benefit support as well.”