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Sep 9th, 2014

The bedroom tax, round one

By Rachel Oliver

This could be big. Thousands of us challenged the government over the bedroom tax, and we’ve won the first round. Last week, 38 Degrees members emailed our MPs to turn up and vote to scrap some of the worst parts of this unfair tax – and the vote went the right way.

The bedroom tax targets the most vulnerable people in our society. It forces people to move or pay more rent if they have a “spare” room, even if there aren’t other homes to go to.

The good news is that Friday’s vote went the right way. But there’ll be several more votes to win before these big changes to the bedroom tax are written into law.

An email from constituents now could make a big impression on MPs. It would tell MPs that we want them to keep fighting this cruel tax and show that we’ll be watching how they vote. It’s easy to email your MP, please just click here.

By writing thousands of emails to our MPs, 38 Degrees members helped persuade them to put principles before politics. Despite their differences, Lib Dem and Labour MPs worked together to win this vote and fight the bedroom tax. It’s not often that politicians from different parties vote together like this. People power is working.

Here’s what MPs have been saying about the impact 38 Degrees members had on their decision:

“I have re-organised my constituency diary and intend to attend this important debate in Parliament tomorrow.” Louise Ellman MP

“I have listened long and hard to your good self and many others who hate this disgraceful tax. I am happy to tell you that I am going to attend, and, hopefully, speak in the debate, and support the motion.” David Anderson MP

But Friday’s vote was just the first step. It’ll take several more votes in the coming months before changes to the bedroom tax are written into law. Together, we need to keep up the pressure on MPs to make sure they carry on voting the right way.

So can you take two minutes now to email your MP now to thank them and ask them to keep voting the right way?

When 38 Degrees members work together, we get things done. Earlier this year, thousands of us emailed our MPs asking them to stop the Hospital Closure Clause, that would have made it easier for the government to close hospitals. And we won!

Together, we have the power to get the worst parts of the bedroom tax scrapped too. Let’s keep up the momentum and show politicians that these cruel cuts are no match for people power.

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