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Osborne spends £30,000 on flat refurbishment, Freedom of Information request reveals

The Chancellor of the Exchequer George Osborne has spent over £30,000 of taxpayers’ money for the redecoration his flat at Number 10 and 11 Downing Street, The Mirror, The Telegraph and The Independent have reported.

Following FoIA requests to the Treasury, it was revealed £32,651 have been spent for improvements in the year starting in April 2010, just before the coalition came to power.

The news follows the public outcry of David Cameron spending £60,000 in refurbishing his flat above Number 11, with half of that amount coming out of the public purse.

The Independent quotes the Labour MP Tom Watson who said: “The government is asking hundreds of thousands of council tenants to forgo work on their homes because of the cuts. George Osborn should take a leadership position and he clearly has not.”

The Mirror reports that a Treasury spokesman said Number 11 Downing Street is a Grade I-listed building and the Government has an obligation to maintain it to an am appropriate standard.

Welfare reform narrative may victimize the disabled 

The coalition’s “scoungers” welfare reform narrative about disabled people has jeopardised the safety of disabled people, charities have warned as The Western Mail reports. A Freedom of Information request to South Wales Police showed there were 392 incidents of hate crimes against disabled people where prejudice might have been a factor.

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