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The Scottish Parliament could act to prevent housing tenants being evicted due to the so called “bedroom tax”, according to Govan Law Centre.

The name has been applied to the UK Government’s benefit changes that come into force from April, under which people in houses with more bedrooms than they are deemed to need will face benefit cuts. It has been predicted that the result will be more debt and more people facing homelessness.

GLC’s principal solicitor Mike Dailly described the benefit change as “the new poll tax in Scotland. It’s a vicious attack on the low paid and poor”.

He claimed that Holyrood should act to minimise its consequences as it had power to change the law so that “bedroom tax” arrears should be treated as an ordinary debt that did not lead to eviction.

The SNP MSP Linda Fabiani argued that the Parliament needed more powers to make an impact.