I have no sympathy for ‘bedroom tax’ suicide

A lady called Stephanie Bottrill killed herself by stepping in front of motorway traffic.  She left a suicide note blaming the government.

Yep, it was their fault.  And, all the seething media that loves nothing more than an anti-government story, hyped up the tale of this distressed lady.

The truth about suicide is that it is rarely any single event that drives the person contemplating ending their life.  It may be that a single event becomes the final straw, but the event alone is rarely the cause.

According to Ms Bottrill’s note the government’s ‘bedroom tax‘ was to blame.  Apparently she was going to lose £20 a week because she lived alone in a three bedroomed house.

In other words, she thought she should have a right to have two empty unlived-in bedrooms for free.  She didn’t care about the families with children who the house would have better suited.

Indeed, how many struggling families have had members commit suicide whilst waiting to be housed in the three bedroomed property they needed, but couldn’t have because some selfish single woman taking up an entire house wouldn’t downsize to a single bedroomed property in order to release the family home to, well, a family?

Of course, we don’t hear about them.  They aren’t news.  The leftie journalists controlling the news we hear about, only want the stories that depict the government as being in some way mean and nasty.

Surely it’s mean and nasty to keep a family out of a family home, and so giving the single person less money if they are rattling around in a huge property all on their own, is completely fair and justified.

The problem with those occupying social housing is that they somehow think they have a god-given right to free and completely paid for housing, and it should be theirs for life.

Er, no!

Social housing is a temporary fix and is assistance for those who can’t be bothered to live within their means or to get a job in order to afford housing like normal people have to.

So, sad as it might be that Ms Bottrill decided to kill herself, she did have plenty of other options.  Neither she, nor the media hyping up her family can blame the government for her choice.  If they had really cared about her they’d have done something to help her when she got into her fragile mental state in the first place.


  1. How much trauma did the inconsiderate woman cause to a hard working lorry driver? Haven't heard his/her story. (not anti-government enough?)


  2. Mr England and others, Words like heartless, short sighted and totally ignorant, spring to mind, especially of the situation this poor woman found herself pushed into, by ill planned legislation from a Neo Nazi Government hell bent on destroying the welfare state. Social housing has been decimated, that is the reason for the shortage in housing, there isn't enough one bedroomed flats/bungalows for people with “extra bedrooms” to move into, along with the fact that private rented accommodation is over priced by greedy landlords who don't maintain their properties they way they should. The bedroom tax/benefit cap/universal credit is just a total con, it's just another way of swindling people of what they've being paying into for years.


  3. What despicable comment Christopher England. As you well know, Iain Duncan Smith uses false statistics. But you are firmly on the side of the liars and bigots, who regard compassion as a sign of weakness and anything other than greed or self interest as bad for the country.


  4. Paying tax/NI isn't like putting a deposit into a savings account that you can later draw back out again. As soon as the loony left realise that the better. We need to get away from their 'take take take' attitude, wouldn't you agree.


  5. The 'greed and self-interest' that you speak of which leads to somebody deciding to stand in the way of a family being able to move into a family home has to be bad for the country. Not only that, but the single people that are infesting family homes then expect us to pay their larger rent for them. What kind of madness is that?


  6. Bet you're a popular person christopher? So many friends and so busy… sat all alone in front of the computer typing crap like this.

    So sad.


  7. A, a nasty vile piece of work you are Mr Engerlund. This woman was a pensioner. She'd probably worked most of her life; and, was the only person left in the family home after her children moved out, and her husband died.

    So, armed with a second hand opinion and a chip on your shoulder, you've diagnosed the reason for her suicide. Put the psychology degree back in the cornflakes packet, you odious cretin.

    Crawl back into your BNP cave before the “caring” parts of the Internet pay you a visit.


  8. Who is to blame?
    The press?
    The government?
    Well the press have only just started to report things like this sad suicide up untill now all that's been in the papers is news about all the scroungers it seems now the press have woken up to the consiquencies of the smearing of the people who cannot fight back people like yourself who should know better jump back onto that old chessnut of they bring it on there selves Christopher open your ears and eyes plus your mind and keep your mouth shut untill you have checked all the information you spout is correct you are more inteligent than to believe it is just winging lefties I have freinds who are being affected by this governments polacies not just the bedroom tax and you have insulted all the hard working people in council houseing
    WHO IS TO BLAME? YOU for being taken in by the government properganda you FOOL


  9. What a vile, horrible ignorant creature you are Mr England. You are either (a)15 years old, (b) educationally subnormal (c)Iain Drunken Shit or (d) a sad sap who pulls the wings off flies. Whatever you are you are disgusting. May karma come & bite you on the backside & you find yourself, sick, disabled or unemployed & need help & you find that thanks to the likes of you there is no welfare state to turn to. What will you do then? Live on fresh air as you'll find that no-one will want to know you, arsehole.


  10. It's called 'insurance' because it's there 'in case' it's needed, just like any insurance, as opposed to an 'assurance'. Like, f'instance car insurance. Car insurance isn't designed as a cash fund to draw from after years of paying in. It's there for when something bad happens to the car.


  11. The lefties are hoping that they can agitate and cause public condemnation of what they have dubbed 'bedroom tax' (There isn't even such a tax), because in their minds they want life to be like it was when the Trade Union Movement controlled everything or the scum behind the Poll Tax riots controlled us and told us what to think.

    Unfortunately for them, the public sympathy is not with their indoctrination. The public are fed up with the scroungers not paying their way, and fed up with the leftie whingers who have an 'agree with us or we'll threaten violence' attitude (as has been demonstrated in some of these replies).

    The people are no longer intimidated by you lot, by the way.


  12. I'll help you with a fact check or two. Personally, I like to know the facts before I write stuff. You could try the same method, by looking into things rather than believing the anti-Government lies you are being fed by those who want to control how you think.

    Firstly, she wasn't a pensioner. She was in her early 50s.

    Secondly, her husband hadn't died. He had moved out and divorced some years before.

    She had been showing signs of depression for quite some time, and was being treated by her doctor. He had issued her sleeping tablets.

    She also had the auto-immune system deficiency, Myasthenia gravis, yet had opted not to claim any form of Disability Allowance. Had she done, she would have had more money.

    She had not applied for any of the cash that is available for those in crisis.

    She had been offered a new social home more suited to her needs but had refused it.

    Hope all those facts help you.


  13. Mr England, for a “self proclaimed” well educated bloke you are surely misled by the Ministry of Misinformation, these measures are identical to what Hitlers propaganda machine used in the 1930s to blame Jews, Gypsies, Mentally and Physically handicapped for all the ills of the state, and “de-sensitise” the general population by “force feeding them right wing bullshit” on the radio and in all the newspapers, thankfully our media is starting to realise that this Government are manipulating the TV/Media, as most of their millionaire pals own the main news outlets. GH


  14. Let's look at 'misinformation'.

    Firstly, the whole anti-Government propaganda from the leftie fascists: It constantly refers to a 'bedroom tax'.

    Yet, nobody is being taxed for having bedrooms!

    If the leftie fascists are supposedly upholding the truth and the Government is the one putting out 'misinformation', then why are the leftie fascists saying there's a 'bedroom tax'?

    Maybe all the misinformation is coming from them, not the Government.

    Our society has many ills that need to be addressed. When one is addressed, like those people living in free houses that are too big for them, keeping the families that need them out of them, the leftie fascists retort by going on about any or all of the other ills in society.

    That's a bit like a person with a parking ticket protesting that other cars have parked there in the past and not gotten a parking ticket. Protest as they might, they got the parking ticket because they had parked illegally.

    So, the leftie fascists can protest as they like, and they can invent phrases like 'bedroom tax' to try to scare and then control people, but it is still wrong for a single person to inhabit a family home and expect to get the money to pay for it all.


  15. Well said! (not sure one can be a leftie fascist but I get your point)

    As soon as anyone makes a comment that doesn't agree with a Socialists point of view the verbal assault on one's intelligence starts – and in some cases the physical violence comes next.

    Particularly unpleasant from those who claim to be caring believers in LA…

    Like the odious person who has posted veiled threats in the post below this comment 😉


  16. Have you ever been to an Atos Assessment? Do you know what that interview is like? Have you had your benefit stopped for “alleged” abuse of the DWP “conditions” of your claim. Have you ever lived in social housing? The reason why there is a lack of social housing is because a lot of “well oiled” people bought up ex council houses when the owners fell on hard times, those social housing dwellings were never replaced, talking about facts, you want to find out whats it's really like to actually make a claim for a benefit and what an ordeal it is, then you can come back with your factual report.


  17. You are a right wing “extremist” Mr England, why don't you join the BNP or UKIP? They are more suited to your extreme ideology and ill informed reasoning. 1200 people have died as a direct result of being told they were “fit for work”, who picks up the pieces of those families who have been bereaved? The Bedroom Tax is NOT a Tax, it's a disgrace, another piece of stupid legislation that is impossible to carry out because there is not enough single bedroom dwellings, that poor woman who had had enough shit from the DWP was offered a dwelling 6 Miles away, away from family and friends, it was her family home why should she move? On my tenancy agreement i cannot have a Lodger or Sub let, it probably said the same on hers too, Mr England give your poor head a shake.


  18. Why do leftie fascists suggest UKIP is right wing or akin to the BNP? I've never understood how they get away with that kind of false propaganda and fearmongering, other than nobody dares challenge or call them on it, because for those who date challenge, there's nothing but personal abuse and intimidation designed to quieten them.

    Source please for the “1200” figure, and proof that their deaths were attributable to being falsely declared 'fit for work'. Who collects such statistics?

    So, let me get this right, free housing has to be offered subject to the precise terms of the recipient, including location? If only the private sector had that luxury, eh?


  19. Since you ask, I have never had the luxury of being given a free house, no. However, I feel sure that if the house was too big for my needs, I would happily pay the extra needed to live in it, and would be content with only getting free money to pay for it up to the value of the housing more suited to my needs.

    I have also been fortunate enough not to have to attend an Atos assessment. Weren't the figures something like 50% of all those called for an assessment decided not to attend but to sign-off from their claim instead?


  20. Council houses are NOT “free”, you idiot, they come with this thing called RENT. Now put the daily mail down & get out into the real world instead of this bigoted little bubble you inhabit


  21. Of course 'council houses' are free. They come at a highly subsidised and unrealistic 'rent' that is more often than not paid by the handouts thrown at those given the free houses, using money taken from the tax payers. Until now those inside the free housing didn't even have to bother to actually organise paying it, it was paid directly, making the house completely free, from the inhabitants perspective.


  22. The facts help, yes. They help identify that the “Bedroom Tax” was what's commonly-known as “The Straw that Broke the Camel's Back”.

    You would've done well to follow the DWP's example, and “not comment on individual cases”, Mr Engerlund.


  23. Who attacked anyone's intelligence? I think all I pointed out was how sad and lonely he must be to feel so happy about someone else's misfortune. And I'm sorry to dissapoint but im neither a leftie or a fascist, obviously my life doesn't revolve around distorted newspapers, I have a life and friends.


  24. I have to say I find it disappointing that you don't feel sorry for this woman who committed suicide, or even her family. But I guess not everybody will be sad when people die. Even if it was the final straw, she would still be alive if she hadn't have been charged the £20 a week, so really it was the cause of her death.

    I think the name of this charge is irrelevant, whether it's called the bedroom tax or the spare room subsidy it still has the same effect on people, and arguing the name of something rather than the substance seems rather pointless.

    I think the problem with this policy is that it's not designed to free up social housing, or to save money, it's designed purely as a way to further stigmatise benefits and label the poor as 'other' and deserving of their situation. I know where I live (Hull) a lot of two-bedroomed flats were given to single people because they were unsuitable for families. Now, this wasn't their choice, social housing is generally allocated to people and now they're having to pay this charge out of what little money they receive. Do you think that's fair? Hull has also featured a lot in the media because thousands of families are affected by this charge yet there are fewer than 100 smaller homes for them to go to. Would you suggest that they move into the more expensive private rental sector, thus costing the taxpayer more in HB?

    The majority of people affected by this are disabled, and the 'spare' rooms are often rooms converted for specific needs, or used to store medical equipment or even are used as a bedroom for a carer that needs to stay overnight. Do you think it's fair that disabled people – given the hammering they're already receiving – have to pay this extra charge?

    Also, pensioners are unaffected by this charge. Given that they're the most likely to be under occupying, with their kids grown up and moved out, wouldn't you agree that they should be subject to the charge too, because as you say it's not fair that families are in cramped properties whilst people are rattling around in houses too big for them, so should the pensioners have to move too?

    This is an unfair charge because there simply aren't enough social houses. Thatcher's legacy coupled with no policies of building large amounts of new affordable homes has resulted in this situation, and now it's being blamed on the people living in the houses.

    Finally, not everybody living in social housing is unemployed. It makes sense for unemployed people to live in council houses anyway, because it obviously saves money on housing benefit. If I was in charge, I'd build enough so that anybody who wanted to rent one could do so, and if they were working they'd be able to save up for a deposit and then eventually by their own house. The current system is broken, but I don't want to digress too much…


  25. Thanks for now agreeing with the essential point I made in my article that Ms Bottrill's suicide was not as a result of being paid reduced rent subsidy, but was one of a number of factors. This is carefully omitted from the propaganda being put around by the anti-Government leftie fascists, as it doesn't suit their needs for a 'martyr' for them to use to champion their 'cause'.

    In this respect, I have as much right to comment on her case as the leftie fascists have to highlight her case in their propaganda against people being paid a fair subsidy for their actual needs.


  26. Gawd! You know little-to-nothing of politics if you call people with left-leaning views fascists.

    Fascism is the unholy marriage of the state and corporations. The current government is a veritable poster-boy for such. Fascism is an ideology of the right, you buffoon. And, I am sad to say, this country now has three 'mainstream' right-wing parties. Tory: Far-right, and indisputably Fascist. The Whigs (commonly known as the Liberal-Democrats): Right-wing, with mildly fascist tendencies. And, New Labour, desperately strangling any aspect of their party that believes in social justice: Centre-right, with a fetish for Fascism and Corporatism.

    In the 25+ I've been of working age, I have spent a grand total of 28 months unemployed. I've watched British society being turned into a “Me! me! me!” culture, the wholesale import of right-wing lunacy which proved oh-so disastrous for the United States; the mass sell-off of anything of value owned by the British public, and odious views such as yours become “mainstream” and “acceptable”.

    That's not the country I want. That's not the society I want. Yet, I would not silence 'useful idiots' such as yourself. With your old National Front membership badge gathering dust in a drawer, I welcome your access to free speech. You're the perfect poster-boy for how screwed-up a frighteningly large proportion of the populace are; a perfect example of the idiots who know the cost of everything, and the value of nothing.


  27. Moron. Really, you deserve to be called on your idiocy.

    Council houses are assets owned by the state – assuming you accept that local councils form part of the state. Rents are set at a level which easily covers the mortgage and maintenance costs for these properties, and the state/council continues to receive that rental income long after the mortgage is paid off.

    You're a fine one to call anyone on falling for 'leftist propaganda'; you obviously know about as much about economics as a woodworm knows about joinery.


  28. The source for the figure of 1200 people dying after there were “wrongly” assessed as being “fit for work” are from the DWPs own figures, and revealed by the Public Accounts Committee. These “assessments” are provided by Atos, whose staff are all on performance related pay, so their “assessments” are rather biassed towards their employers Atos/DWP. Enjoy you way of life, enjoy it while you can, because we all become ill, unemployed or old at some point in our lives.


  29. Firstly, thank you for a well presented and strong rebuttal to my points, and not a death threat in sight.

    Maybe, a way forward for those unable to 'get out' of larger houses due to lack of alternative stock more suited to their needs, would be to belay the reduced subsidy if they are on a 'waiting list' for more suitable accommodation. This would then throw the 'problem' back to the local authority to address, rather than leave tenants unfairly penalised. Those opting to not apply for more suitable accommodation would be subjected to the reduced subsidy.

    If a tenant can show that an 'extra bedroom' is being used as a result of their disability, then, yes, it makes sense to either not reduce their rent subsidy, or to make up the shortfall from any payments made as a result of their disability. It also needs to be protected from being open to abuse, imho. Abuse from either side, that is.

    Pensioners are a difficult one. In principle, yes, they should be subjected to the same rules, considering how we are all living so much longer. Of course, future pensioners will not have the dilemma, having reduced their living space as their requirements reduce ahead of them becoming pensioners. As for current pensioners, well it needs a debate, imho.

    No system will ever be perfect. However, we have to move towards systems which seem fairer, whilst retaining manoeuvrability based on individual circumstances.


  30. @ Witch Hunted, Sorry, but I cannot find any published statistics anywhere for what you are claiming.

    The only story about 1,200 deaths relates to Staffordshire NHS trust, and has nothing to do with people being 'wrongly' assessed as 'fit for work', more to do with issues with patient care in Staffordshire.

    Maybe you have confused things a little. Hopefully you confused things in error, and not in order to spread leftie fascist misinformation.


  31. Source of figuers DWP own figures obtained under freedom of information act.
    When you use your real name we will stop being Anonymous
    To think.I fought for freedom in the war for what?


  32. The figure was on an ITN news item with Rt Hon Margaret Hodge, Chairman of the Public Accounts Committee, I've just watched it again and she says 1100, my mistake, but the interview was 8 weeks ago, so my figure may be correct by now, unfortunately, go to ITN and search politics or Atos assessments, it's not “leftie lies” it's hideous unnecessary deaths caused by those arsehole elitists with the purse strings and no idea of how people at the bottom of the heap exist.


  33. This has drifted a heck of a long way off topic.

    But I agree with you on one main point, the turning of British society into a 'me! Me! Me!' culture. We watched the Soviet sponsored Trade Union Movement do this during the 1960s and 1970s, along with its violence and intimidation against anybody daring to stand in the way of their totalitarian rule. Heck, they even sanctioned the killing of anybody trying to get to work.

    Going by the standard of a lot of the comments here, it seems the need to use threats and intimidation against anybody the leftie-fascists disagree with is alive and well.

    The 'Me! Me! Me!' culture has never been addressed, it just flipped from the hands of the Trade Union Movement bullies into the hands of the city during the 1980s and 1990s.

    It needs to be addressed, alongside the violence and intimidation offered by the leftie-fascists to anybody who dares not to toe their line.


  34. Still banging your gums about “free” council property I see. Have you any idea how much rent is? In fact I'm not going to bother explaining about rent, since your pea-brain hasn't got the capacity to comprend. Just get yourself down to the nearest council office & put your name on the housing list, then you'll learn for certain that council properties are not “free” in fact the rent for some is far in excess of what the house is actually worth.


  35. Please give your local council a phone call, Mr England. Ask them how many vacant one, two and three-bedroom properties they have that are fit for human habitation. If they cannot, or will not answer, file a freedom of information act request for that information – they are legally required to provide it.

    Then you will be as-well informed as many of the “leftie press” you hold in such contempt. The highest demand for social housing is for single-bedroom properties; the most-commonly available stock is family homes with multiple bedrooms.

    What the press have dubbed the 'Bedroom Tax' is a real cut in benefits for around 600,000 people across the UK. The vast majority can only be rehoused in single-bedroom properties in the private sector, which will cost the state twice as much in housing benefit. Assuming Iain “ratbag” Duncan Smith does start moving people off benefits into jobs, those need to be far higher-paid to have people able to cover the cost of the rent for themselves.

    You, quite obviously, despise anyone who needs the social safety net that this country was once rightly proud of. Yet seem blind to the fact that those taking the most from the state in benefits are private companies. That's usually multinationals who have a range of tactics to minimise their wage bill and force employees to rely on any top-ups they are entitled to from the state.


  36. Don't you mean community charge?
    You leftie fascist calling it poll tax
    No such thing didn't do your research there Christopher ♥


  37. Thanks for the reply.

    I actually think a lot of people are prepared to move, because they can't really afford to pay this charge, but there will never be a place for them to move into unless there's a massive national house building policy.

    I think that's where the discretionary housing payment (DHP) comes in, but as its name suggests, it's not going to be guaranteed. I can't find the exact figure right now but I know that the DHP is limited to a period of months, so even if disabled people can prove they need that room because of their disability, they will eventually end up paying for it.

    Well, the reason I mentioned pensioners was because they're proof that this policy isn't about freeing up under-occupied homes. If it was, the Tories would go after them as well. It would be political suicide of course as pensioners tend to vote a lot more than the people currently affected by the welfare reforms. Personally I wouldn't target pensioners – or anyone for that matter!

    Well this policy is as far from perfect as you can get. It's more than likely going to cost more than it saves – and that's just financially. The human cost can't be measured as easily, but that's going to be high too.

    The problem with any of our suggestions is that the government won't listen because it doesn't care. It's only slightly charged a couple of things after public protest: one of them was the result of a couple in Hull (again!) losing their child to cancer and getting charged for the spare room, this led the government to introduce a 12-month “grieving period” where you won't get charged for a spare room. After that it's business as usual. There was another minor one but I can't remember exactly now…I think it might have been that parents with children as serving soldiers won't get charged while the soldiers are away in Afghan or wherever.

    But yeah, in my opinion the fairest thing to do would be to scrap this policy and start building houses. Anybody bothered about reducing benefits would encourage this, rather than treating the symptoms of a broken system as the problem.


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