Posts Tagged ‘Council housing’

Why Cameron knows nothing and cares less about council house tenants

04/08/2010, 06:50:35 PM

Never has David Cameron displayed his lack of understanding of council and social housing tenants more than in the appalling idea of time-limiting social housing tenancies. My parents moved into a new council house in 1965 and I was brought up there. It was our home. Our family wanted a secure place from which to plan our future. That is not unusual for anyone – whether they live in rented or bought accommodation.

If my parents had been told they could be evicted after five years of the tenancy, it would have immediately cast a shadow on the family’s security. No longer would they have been able to plan work and education for their children. Their focus would have been: “where will we be living next?”

Would David Cameron countenance this arrangement for his own family?

It tells us a great deal that the prime minister’s response to shortage of social housing is to limit the rights of those in occupation of social housing. A more explicable option would be to stop the sale of council housing. This directly removes homes from public sector stock and makes fewer homes available for those in need. But I suspect that this would not be acceptable to David Cameron’s political antennae – alienating his restless back-benchers.

Instead, our prime minister chooses an easier target: those in desperate need of homes who will accept a roof over their heads at any cost. Time-limited tenancies will create uncertainty and store up problems for families in years ahead. It tells us much about the political instincts of this Tory/Lib-Dem government.

Ian Lucas is the MP for Wrexham

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