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Page last updated at 11:56 GMT, Friday, 9 July 2010 12:56 UK

Housing Benefit cut 'will increase rough sleeping' says a north charity

Housing Benefit claimant Anthony Slater

'Housing Benefit claimant Anthony Slater explains how important the allowance is to his family

A charitable north housing group says planned government cuts in housing benefit will increase homelessness and 'rough sleeping' in the region.

The Byker Bridge Housing Association, provides accommodation and healthcare for vulnerable homeless people.

They believe that the organisations helping them will be placed under even greater pressure.

But the coalition government insists that the £21bn annual housing benefit bill must be reduced.

The Byker Bridge Housing Association aims to provide accommodation, training and healthcare to single homeless people but says its job will be made much harder by the planned reductions in housing benefit.

Maurice Condie from the organisation says:

"If they reduce housing benefit, there will be an impact on homelessness and on rough sleeping and it will put the services we deliver for homeless people under an enormous amount of pressure.

"As more people get pushed down the housing ladder, it will have an effect on our hostels and our supported housing."

For more on this story and coalition reaction, watch the Politics Show this Sunday from 11 am on BBC1.

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