Hundreds of Lewisham Deptford residents have contacted me over the last two years to ask for help with housing issues. Many are stuck in unsuitable or overcrowded social housing and the sad fact is that only those in the most acute need are likely to be moved. Others are frustrated that they are unable to afford sky-high London rents on a low income.
After seven years in power, the Tories’ record on housing is failing on all fronts. Home-ownership has fallen sharply, rough sleeping has more than doubled, private rents have risen faster than incomes and affordable house building in 2016 was at its lowest level for 24 years.
If Labour is elected on June 8th, we will take bold action to tackle the housing crisis. We will build at least a million new homes by 2022, including 100,000 affordable council and housing association homes a year to rent and buy.
We will also seek to end insecurity for private renters by introducing a new charter of renters’ rights. We will guarantee new legal standards to ensure that all homes are fit for human habitation and give councils new powers to license landlords.
From 1997-2010 successive Labour governments built almost 2 million new homes and cut homelessness by 62%. I hope that voters will give us a chance to build on that success over the next five years.