Rant: removing benefits & evicting convicted rioters

Many people are calling for benefits to be removed from rioters and for them to be evicted from their houses.. How do these people think? What do they reckon is going to happen?
I mean lets just leave aside the assumption that rioters are going to be on benefits (and actually I think many of them will – if we’re going to draw a connection between deprivation and poverty we need to accept that also means that many will be on benefits), and also the question of why people in council or social housing (whose rent payments *subisdise* everyone elses council tax – yep, councils make a profit on social housing, so get off your fucking high horse if you think you, the noble taxpayer, are paying for their houses, cos you’re not) should be punished more than someone who rents privately or owns their own home.
Lets leave aside the fact that many defendants will be too young to receive benefits, except possibly EMA – and we’ve already taken that away.
Lets also make the rather far-fetched assumption that the wheels of justice have turned smoothly and that everyone who is convicted actually did commit a crime.

So the people we have are people we know who are happy to loot and riot (although since some have been jailed for swearing, or for picking up shorts that a housemate had robbed, that’s also an assumption being made).  And you want to make them homeless, and deny them access to benefits?
Just stop and think.
What is going to happen? A load of homeless people, with no access to benefits. Who are happy to loot and rob.  Remember that it’s extremely difficult to get a job if you are homeless – bank accounts and HR departments pretty much require addresses.  Perhaps you can use a friends, or families, but perhaps not.  So no home, no money, no way to get benefits, no way to get a job.  What is going to happen?


2 responses

  1. That’s a strong claim there that councils make a profit from social housing. I don’t know either way so would appreciate it if you could share your source material.

    August 15, 2011 at 1:10 am

    • Certainly –


      “Typically, respondents were getting back less than 25% of what they were contributing. One officer commented: ‘We collect £12m in rent and £4m goes straight to the Government.’ “

      “The redistributive ‘pool’ is in surplus, with council housing rent payers contributing through the overall surplus nearly £0.2billion to the Treasury. Councils and their tenants have no guarantee that this surplus will then be spent on housing and not health, education or another area. In effect council rent payers are paying an additional tax to Government and as the table below shows this surplus is expected to increase to £0.4billion in 20011/12, £0.7 billion in 2019/20 and £0.9 billion by 2022/23.”

      There’s also this I found from Leeds when I was looking for something specific to Birmingham: http://www.leedstenants.org.uk/page/what-we-say/file/evidence-council-housing-group-inquiry

      In revenue the Management and Maintenance allowance per council home for Leeds is set at £1,645.35. This means that with a guideline rent of £2,799.03, every council household paid the government £1,153.68 in negative subsidy

      (I’ve added the link to the ARCH page into the article following your post)

      August 15, 2011 at 11:08 am

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