Cameron proposing to cut housing benefit to under 25s at the point when there is huge unemployment in young people is absolutely bonkers. It's all very well refusing benefits to those who refuse to look for work, but to penalise those that that are struggling because there are no jobs for them is ludicrous.
Apparently the plan is that they should live with their parents. Well that's all very well for Cameron's kids. I am sure there is plenty of spare rooms. But what about for those of us who earn around or below the national average. Those of us who work hard in low paid jobs may not be able to afford to house a grown child. All financial support stops at 19, so how are we to stretch our tight budgets even further.
I wouldn't mind so much if we were the lazy claimants he speaks of. But it is wholly possible to work hard and still be poor. Especially in the parts of the country where housing is so expensive. A three bedroom property where I live costs approximately 10 times our income.
The main reason that house prices are artificially high is because of people buying to let. This in turn bumps up the prices in the rental market as our rent has to cover the mortgage on the over-priced house and a little extra as profit.
Renting is very expensive, meaning even many earning above the national average rely on a portion of their rent coming in from housing benefit just to make ends meet.
Interesting that recently there was talk of people being asked to leave housing that they are under-inhabiting. And certainly a deduction is made from any support you receive for additional bedrooms. So when your child goes to university you could be forced to move to a smaller property, meaning there is no where for them to move back to anyway.
And its not just a case of your parents being able to afford to house you. What if you are an orphan under the age of 25? What if you are estranged from your parents? What if there are NO jobs where your parents live? And what if you beat 400 other people to that minimum wage job but can't take it because it's too far away and you can't afford to move near it without some help with your rent?
We need affordable rents and living wages as a solution. 80% of housing benefit is paid to those in work, so those two measures could see an impressive drop in claims.
For many teens today the outlook is bleak indeed. No job, no home, no future. Revolution? What will the government do when they drive the under 25s to riot- put them all in prison- sounds like some of them will be grateful for the roof over their head.