Coalition blamed for bedroom tax suicide

Empty bedrooms come at a price for housing benefit claimants
Empty bedrooms come at a price for housing benefit claimants

By politics.co.uk staff

A 53-year-old woman who killed herself ten days ago blamed the government's 'bedroom tax' in a suicide note, it has emerged.

Stephanie Bottrill, who lived in Solihull, threw herself in front of a lorry on the M6 motorway after realising she could not cope with the extra £80 a month caused by the coalition government's changes.

"Don't blame yourself for me ending my life," she wrote in the note, to her 27-year-old son Steven Bottrill. "The only people to blame are the government."


Her son told the Sunday People, which reported the story, his mother had rung him saying she was struggling to cope days beforehand.

"She was fine before this bedroom tax," he said. "It was dreamt up in London, by people in offices and big houses.

"They have no idea the effect it has on people like my mum."

David Cameron has been forced to defend the coalition's decision to end the 'spare room subsidy' on a weekly basis in recent prime minister's questions.

The policy sees housing benefit recipients lose 14% of their payout for one spare bedroom and 25% for two spare bedrooms.

Stephanie Bottrill had two spare bedrooms in her home, which cost her £320 a month. She had lived in the property for 18 years.

Comments underneath the Sunday People's article suggested her despair is shared by others. "I TOO HAVE FELT LIKE TAKING MY OWN LIFE READING THIS REPORT IT WAS LIKE READING ABOUT MYSELF," one reader wrote.

"I CRY CONSTANTLY AND WORRY ALL THE TIME SO YES SUICIDE HAS ENTERED MY MIND."

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