New data has shown that over 1,000 in Ayr, Carrick and Cumnock have been affected by the bedroom tax.

From April 2013, the UK Government limited Housing Benefit and the housing element of Universal Credit for working-age council or housing association tenants if they are considered to be under-occupying their homes.

This is widely known as the 'bedroom tax'. It means the amount of rent tenants can claim Housing Benefit for is reduced by 14 per cent for one additional bedroom and 25 per cent for two or more additional bedrooms.

Analysis gathered by the SNP using the latest data available from the UK government Department for Work and Pensions, revealed that 1,142 households in East Ayrshire and 817 in South Ayrshire have had their housing benefits cut due to the policy as of February 2023.

1578 households in receipt of Universal Credit in Ayr, Carrick and Cumnock are also said to have had their housing benefits cut due to the tax.

MP for the area, Allan Dorans, said the move is costing the Scottish Government millions of pounds, with only one solution for the situation.

He said: "The Tories and Labour are pushing people across Scotland into poverty, and costing the Scottish Government hundreds of millions of pounds by choosing to continue imposing the bedroom tax against Scotland's will.

"This is yet another broken promise from the pro-Brexit Labour Party, who are becoming indistinguishable from the Tories.

“In contrast, the SNP Scottish Government has spent millions of pounds protecting families by mitigating policies like the bedroom tax – all with one hand tied behind our back.

“With the full powers of independence, Scotland could rid itself of Westminster control for good – which would make policies like the bedroom tax a thing of the past.”

Responding to SNP claims, Scottish Conservative and Unionist MSP for South Scotland, Sharon Dowey said: "Independence would mean huge cuts to essential services. It would wreck Scotland's economy, put jobs at risk, and leave the most vulnerable without a safety net.

"Nothing would be more damaging to Scottish families than the SNP's reckless plans to split apart from the rest of the United Kingdom."

Scottish Labour has also been contacted for comment.