Protest to go on 'all night long' over bedroom tax
A THROUGH-THE- NIGHT protest against the bedroom tax will be held in Swansea this weekend.
The Mass Sleep Out will see those against the controversial change to housing benefit rules gather outside the city's Guildhall to raise awareness and provide information about the "tax" on Saturday.
Introduced in April this year, families deemed to have too much living space receive a reduced housing benefit payment.
The forthcoming protest is one of many taking part across the country on the day.
One of those taking part, Alison Bennewith, said: "We will be congregating in Castle Square at 6pm before making our way to the Guildhall for 9pm.
"The bedroom tax targets some of the poorest and most vulnerable members of our society.
"I have my own personal reason to get involved as well. I was homeless in the early part of my life and it caused me great problems.
"It is just wrong."
Ms Bennewith said more than 80 people had signed up to the protest Facebook page to say they would be attending the night.
Earlier this month, figures obtained by Plaid Cymru revealed that Carmarthen, Swansea and Neath Port Talbot had all seen a big increase in the amount of people requesting discretionary housing payments.
In the first two months following the introduction of the policy Swansea Council received more applications in the first two months of 2013/14 (820) — than in the whole of 2012/13 when there were 802.
Neath Port Talbot Council received 536 applications for support between April and June, compared to 561 for the whole of last year.
In Carmarthenshire the amount soared from 327 in the whole of 2012/13, to 534 in April and May of this year.
Carmarthen East and Dinefwr MP Jonathan Edwards said: "It is no coincidence that applications for discretionary housing payment have shot up since the introduction of housing benefit changes.
"It is nothing but a headline- grabbing, ill-thought-out policy that panders to the prejudices of those opposed to any social protection, and has failed on its own terms."