Monday, November 10, 2008

How to Lose Friends and Alienate People

Don’t do it, Margaret don’t do it.... Inside Housing magazine reports here that Housing Minister, Margaret Beckett, is actually considering proposals by the Chartered Institute of Housing (of all people) to end lifelong social housing tenancies.

I covered this appalling suggestion here last month. The idea is that all tenancies should be flexible and subject to review. So if you are a social housing tenant (an ugly term, I wish we could think of something better?) gets a better paid job or their kids leave home, they face eviction? Leaving aside for now, that this would result in modern day social housing ghetto’s which are only inhabited by the very poor and the desperate.

Now, incentives to those who are on higher earnings and want to buy their own property or for pensioners to exchange for smaller properties when their kids leave home are well worth examining. But the idea that by going on training courses and bettering yourself you then run the risk of losing your home is just daft. Personally I do not want to go to court and evict grannies who have lived in a home for the past 40 years and who just want to spend their last days there amongst their friends and local community.

This is a really silly idea and potentially very damaging to the Labour Party. You can understand the reasons why we need to do something about the chronic shortage of family sized homes, but this policy is just a sign of desperate symptoms not solutions. Can you really imagine how this will go down in Labour heartlands? I can – and it’s all very, very badly.

Mucking about with allocation policies on the margin is no substitute for a serious large scale social housing building programme which also has the added benefit of keeping people in jobs and reflating the economy. Is there any other real solution to this problem Margaret? Come on, you know it makes sense.


Anonymous said...

Why would you try and work your way out of poverty if you stand to lose your house

Stop flying Kites

and lets start building council houses its what Labour did best

Anonymous said...

The investment in social housing is paid for by taxes. There are waiting lists of vulnerable people who are desperate to get a house. If your circumstances change you should be subject to review.

Anonymous said...

Letsd start building council houses?..with what? labour (the Party of economic incompetence)blew all the money. Labour are good at spending other peoples money.

Anonymous said...

And how many council houses or social housing has Tory Councils in London built ???????

How many in Tory Hammersmith

Hammersmith is the future Tory Gov

dont care , slash services and look after the rich

Anonymous said...

why do most City bankers not pay tax

because they have accounts abroad

but love to live in our country

the main Tory Donor lives in Belize and does not pay a penny in taxes

Oh how I love capitalism

rich get richer
poor get poorer and then they blame the poor

Tax the rich

Anonymous said...

Oh yes the Tories Black Thursday and Mr Camerons role was just a dream

John Gray said...

Hi Anons
Apologies for delay in replying
Anon 1
Yes, kites? Yes
Anon 2
This sounds alright in theory, please confirm that you support evicting people who improve their conditions or whose kids leave home. Compulsion is at the heart of all this. yes or no.
Anon 3
Don’t be so silly
Anon 4/5/6
True, true and true