The Liberal Democrats will ‘vigorously evaluate’ the impact of the bedroom tax, after a motion slamming it passed by a landslide at conference yesterday.
Only two members voted against the grassroots motion calling for an ‘immediate evaluation’ after a series of speeches condemning it.
The motion, which is now official party policy, condemns the bedroom tax for ‘discriminating against the most vulnerable in society.’
It says the policy fails to appreciate the needs of disabled people, and notes that outside of London there is not enough policy.
After a series of speeches condemning the policy only two members voted against it, with no sign of the party leadership in the conference hall.
The motion, tabled by grassroots Northumbrian member Julie Porksen, commits to not withdrawing the benefits of those on waiting lists for suitable social housing.
“Conference there is something going wrong when standards of living go forward for battery hens, but backwards for people’” he said.
‘We are liberal democrats and we do not kick people when they are down. Conference we must not talk the Tory talk, and we must not walk the Tory walk, because that will lead us down a path that is destructive and divisive for society.’
Speaking for the motion, Councillor Richard Kemp, former leader of Liverpool Council described the policy as ‘reprehensible and evil’.
Liberal Democrat peer Lord Mike German said: ‘We recognise that this is an issue which causes debate within the party which is why we have successfully argued for more funding to protect the most vulnerable.
‘We have listened to the views expressed in today’s debate and will continue to vigorously evaluate the impact of this policy. As we have said all along, we will monitor its effect on our communities and take action accordingly.’
Challenged on the bedroom tax by party members in a question and answer session, Nick Clegg said ‘you would have to be made of granite’ not to be moved by the issue, but did not commit to any action on it.
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