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'No right of appeal' bedroom tax victim celebrates victory

Judge exempts her from the cut, ruling: 'It looks like a study, then it probably is a study.'

A bedroom tax victim told by a Welsh council she had no right to appeal was celebrating yesterday after a judge freed her from the Tory benefit cut.

Caerphilly Council tenant Katherine Jenkins said she was told that she had no grounds to appeal after being stripped of £14 per week when the bedroom tax was introduced last April. But she surprised officials on Tuesday by winning an exemption at a tribunal.

“Initially, during a home visit, I was told by a Caerphilly Council representative that I had no right to appeal my decision,” she said.

“This was later repeated over the telephone.”

Labour-run Caerphilly Council contested Ms Jenkins’s appeal at the tribunal in Newport.

However the judge overturned the sanction and said: “While one might say that if it looks like and sounds like a duck, it is a duck.

“One can also say that if it looks like a study, then it probably is a study.”

The Caerphilly Against the Bedroom Tax group repeated its accusation that the council failed to support affected tenants in the wake of their victory.

Council leader Gerald Jones has told the South Wales Argus that tenants are receiving “guidance on finding more suitable homes, benefits, budgeting and finding employment.”

Ms Jenkins added: “The majority of tenants in receipt of benefits do not have disposable incomes to manage. Nothing from nothing is still nothing.

“It is time for the council to pull its finger out and help tenants by providing accurate information and real support.”

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