Tuesday, 23 December 2014

Is the Council using Big Brother Tactics?

The Council is sending out a very curt letter to people who receive the 25% Single Person Discount on their council tax, to say that checks suggested other adults were living with them. The letter says: "We are working with an external agency to carry out a residency check on all properties receiving a single person discount and results indicate that you may no longer be the only adult at your address". Recipients are given 14 days to declare whether they are the sole adult in the house to avoid automatically losing their council tax discount, backdated to 1st April. The letter is ominously signed by the council Fraud Manager This letter was sent out in December, some people are away for Christmas, other will mistake the letter as junk mail. I know many people who live on their own received the letter and were upset by its tone. One resident told me "The Council is basically accusing people of lying without being able to explain what evidence they have". I'm concerned A lot of people living on their own will be confused and frightened by this letter. What is the Council doing running checks on its own residents via credit reference agencies, the tone and timing of this letter raise serious questions. I could see many people loosing a discount they are fully entitled to. I will be asking for an apology.

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