By a Newsnet reporter
A local authority which is run by a Conservative / Labour alliance has sent out letters to c/bruncil tenants serving Notice of Proceedings for Recovery of Possession due to rent arrears.
The letters sent out to local people in South Ayrshire warn tenants that the council can take legal action to repossess a home any time during the six month period starting from the date on the notice. Serving the notice is a legal requirement before the council can take action at the Sheriff Court.
The letters state that all household residents over the age of 16 will receive copies of the notice. Recipients are also warned that if the case goes to court they will incur legal costs of approximately £400 and their credit ratings may be affected.
But more alarming than that is the added threat that if there are any children in the household then children’s services may be informed.
Newsnetscotland tried to speak to those who had received the letters but they were unwilling to speak to the media due to concerns about their families.
South Ayrshire Council has 30 councillors, nine Conservative, nine SNP, nine Labour and three Independents.
Last month The Ayrshire Post reported that a special meeting of the council had been convened and SNP councillor Douglas Campbell moved a motion calling on the council to ‘restate its opposition to the bedroom tax.’
Conservative Councillor Robin Reid proposed an amendment repeating an earlier commitment to ‘assist vulnerable families affected by welfare reform.’ Councillor Campbell insisted that the amendment did not give clear enough support to all families but it was carried by 15 votes to 9.
Meanwhile Shelter Scotland has called on new Scottish Secretary Alistair Carmichael to prioritise help for homeless people affected by the bedroom tax.
Shelter Scotland director, Graeme Brown said:
“That homeless people are being hit with a bedroom tax bill in temporary accommodation they have no choice over is especially callous and will land homeless people with debts when they are already in a vulnerable position.
“That is why we are urging all politicians to act now to help banish the bedroom tax monster from tens of thousands of homes across Scotland.
“The starting point should be to exempt homeless people with no option other than temporary accommodation from the bedroom tax.
People who are worried about rent arrears due to bedroom tax can get advice from the Shelter Scotland Website.