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Darren welcomes plans to ban ‘no fault’ evictions

Darren Jones, MP for Bristol North West,  has welcomed news of the government’s plan to ban Section 21, known as ‘no fault’ evictions.

Darren said:

“I am committed to strengthening tenants’ rights and I support the abolition of the current system of ‘no fault’ evictions. For many of the 4.7 million private renting households in England, the risk of being evicted by a section 21 notice casts a looming shadow of insecurity. While the majority of landlords are good landlords and most understand the expectations upon them, some rogue landlords and letting agents undermine the good work of the rest of the sector and give it a bad name. More needs to be done to make tenancies more secure and to ensure that homes are decent and affordable – overhauling Section 21 is a great start.

 Private tenants need clear and positive action and that is why I support a consumer rights revolution for renters to bring private renting into the twenty-first century. The Labour Party has long-campaigned to scrap Section 21, give renters greater security with a three-year cap on rent rises and introduce new legal minimum standards. This would be supported by introducing tougher fines for those who fail to meet minimum standards, with those fines funding local authority enforcement work.

Already this week alone, my office has heard from two constituents being evicted with only 8 weeks notice – they have no rent arrears and some tenants find they face eviction after asking for legitimate repairs – yet they get almost no protection from short-notice evictions under the current Section 21 process.

With ever-rising private rents, thousands on the housing waiting lists and cuts to welfare benefits, it has been clear to me that ‘no fault’ evictions have pushed many people into hostels, sofa surfing, van dwelling and street homelessness. I am glad the government have finally realised tenants deserve better protection, but it really shouldn’t have taken this long!

I will continue to press the Government at every opportunity to abolish Section 21 and reform the private rented sector to address the imbalance of power between tenants and landlords“.

You can follow Darren’s work on housing here.

 

 

 

Darren signs fire protection of property letter

Darren signed a letter asking that the Fire Safety Building Regulations are updated to protect not only lives but property such as schools. health services and peoples’ homes as well. You can read the letter below.
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Darren writes to Homes England about Astry Close

Homes England are planning on closing a funding scheme before Ambition Lawrence Weston will be able to apply for it in order to build 40 homes for community use. They are planning on closing the fund even if there is money left. Darren wrote to Homes England to urge them to think again.

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Darren visits new housing in Lawrence Weston

Bristol North West MP Darren Jones visited Curo’s site at Corbet Close in Lawrence Weston last week to find out more about the organisation’s plans to build 57 much-needed new affordable homes in the area.

The local MP was accompanied on the site visit by Curo Managing Director, Gerraint Oakley, and the project team. The development will provide one, two and three bedroom homes for social and affordable rent, as well as a number of homes for shared ownership.

Curo submitted its planning application in August and is anticipating the new homes could be completed by the end of 2021 if granted consent by Bristol City Council. Corbet Close along with Curo’s other proposed development in Lawrence Weston – for 128 homes at Henacre Road – could see the addition of 185 new homes in total for the area, of which 95 will be affordable housing.

Darren said:

” These developments will help more families from Lawrence Weston to stay in or return to the community they love and where they grew up. I am pleased that more than half of the new homes proposed by Curo will be available as affordable housing – these homes will benefit people who are on the council’s housing list. I grew up in Lawrence Weston and I’m delighted to see investment in housing in this area – these developments and others like it will not only create new housing that is urgently needed in Bristol, they’ll also deliver growth in the local economy. Housing Associations are key partners in delivering our city’s target of 2,000 new homes per year by 2020″.

Gerraint Oakley said: “We’re keen to work with the council and other partners to create even more new housing in Bristol and look forward to be able to start building both at Henacre Road and Corbet Close. We’d like to thank Darren Jones MP for taking the time to visit our site and find out more about our developments which will benefit the whole area – including our existing tenants at Corbet Close, who will enjoy better external communal areas, improved security and amenities.”

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Darren continues to call on government to back new social housing

On 31st July, Darren signed a letter calling on the Government to urgently release their much-delayed Social Housing Green Paper before the housing crisis continued to spiral out of control.

Following pressure and since that date, the government has released the Green Paper, but it is lacking in detail and funding of how social housing demand will meet supply. Darren has therefore signed another cross-party letter calling on the government to act.

Darren said:

“I am pleased the government have finally got on, bowed to pressure and released this much-promised Green Paper but to be frank it is hugely lacking in any great detail (and funding!) on how to resolve the nation’s housing crisis. This is because it is quite clear, the main way to resolve the years of under-investment in, and priority given to, council and social housing is to build more of it and quickly!

Whole swathes of working Britain can’t afford their rent let alone think about buying a home for their family. Everyone should be entitled to a safe, secure and warm home – in today’s austerity Britain this is feeling far too much like a luxury not a human right.

Whilst Bristol City Council is working hard to buck the trend and build housing at an affordable rent, I once again urge the government to invest in council and social housing and give councils and housing associations the full support and funding they need to ensure those in unsecure housing, in hostels and temporary accommodation,  struggling with high rent, sofa surfing and rough sleeping have the possibility of a home in the future. Not to do so is a neglect of their duty”.

You can follow Darren’s work on housing here.

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Darren comments on Rough Sleeping Strategy

MP for Bristol North West, Darren Jones shared his views following the release of the government’s Rough Sleeping Strategy on 13 8 18.

Darren said:

” It’s all too little, too late and as anyone who visits our city centre knows it unfortunately won’t slow down the increasing numbers of people driven onto the streets by the government’s austerity politics and cuts to the support available to the most vulnerable. I anticipate Universal Credit, now rolling out across Bristol, will only make matters worse.

The government need to urgently assess the impact their cuts are having across the whole public, voluntary and charitable sphere and stop this political experiment – it isn’t working! This strategy fails to address the root causes of rough sleeping – the starting point for this, and the Social Housing Green Paper, should have been a significant increase in the number of social properties built alongside dramatically improved access to mental health care, employment support and training, security for private renters and substance misuse services“.

 

 

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Darren signs letter calling for Social Housing green paper to be published

1.16 million households are on Social Housing waiting lists, but the Government have delayed their publication of a Social Housing green paper. With private rentals increasingly expensive this is urgently needed.

Darren signed a letter calling on the Government to provide details of when this will be published. He was one of 35 strong, cross-party group of MPs, showing the strength of feeling about this issue.

 

 

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Darren backs Crisis ‘Everybody In’ campaign

MP for Bristol North West, Darren Jones has added his pledge to the new Crisis ‘Everybody In’ campaign which seeks to end street homelessness.

Darren said:

” Housing is the number one issue in my inbox – I know how it feels to have people come to me for help when they’re in fear of eviction, suffering in unsuitable temporary accommodation, sleeping on other people’s floors or in their cars, or even sleeping rough out in Bristol North West – this is totally unacceptable in modern Britain.

We see more and more people sleeping in doorways in our city centre – I know that something needs to be done and the government must act to increase house building and support local authorities and organisations that help vulnerable people. That’s why I’m backing the Crisis Campaign, that launched on Monday 11th June, to end homelessness in the UK.

The recent announcement by the council of £600,000 funding to support Bristol’s homeless is a great start but that alone won’t solve the rising number of rough sleepers in Bristol and further afield.

I have pledged my support to do what I can to end homelessness and my message will soon appear on the Crisis website”.

You can find out more about Crisis’ campaign to end homelessness here.

#EverybodyIn