Ruth Cadbury backs Labour legislation to protect renters from homes unfit for human habitation

Ruth Cadbury MP showed her support for renters in Brentford and Isleworth on Friday 19 January 2018, when she attended the Second Reading of the Homes (Fitness for Human Habitation and Liability for Housing Standards) Bill.

The Bill, which was been brought forward by MP Karen Buck, gives renters in Brentford and Isleworth and across the country the right to take their landlord to court over unsafe and poor housing conditions.

More than 135,000 homes in London have a hazard in their rented home which poses a “serious and immediate risk to health and safety”, according to the recent official statistics. This is the equivalent of 1 in 12 rented homes in London.

Ruth Cadbury MP said:

“It is inexcusable that in this day and age in the sixth wealthiest country in the world people are living in horrendous conditions. It is just a handful of bad landlords which are causing this needless suffering and creating accommodation which is unfit for human habitation.”

“Constituents have come to me in dire situations where they live alongside mice, without cooking facilities living off ready meals, damp without a working boiler and burns from poor plumbing not regulating water temperature.”

“That is why I supported this bill in the Commons today and when it returns in the future.”

The Labour Bill will give tenants new legal powers to enforce their right to a decent home by taking their landlord to court if the property they live in is not fit. This is a particularly important for council tenants such as those who lived in Grenfell Tower, because it is councils who are notionally responsible for enforcing standards, but local authorities can’t enforce against themselves.

This change in the law has been backed by Labour previously and was included in the Party’s June manifesto but has been blocked by the Tories on two previous occasions. However, following a Labour campaign, the government now say they will support the legislation.

Ruth Cadbury MP was one of many MPs on hand to see the Bill safely through its Second Reading on Friday 19th January. The Bill will now progress and be scrutinised by a Parliamentary Committee.

Labour’s Shadow Secretary of State for Housing, John Healey MP said:

“Our homes are at the centre of our lives but at the moment renters too often don’t have the basic rights that we take for granted in other areas.

“In practice you have fewer rights renting a family home than you do buying a fridge-freezer, and decisions made by Conservative Ministers have made it easier for bad landlords to let unfit homes. As a result, too many people are forced to put up with downright dangerous housing.

“After the terrible fire at Grenfell Tower, it’s even more important that we ensure all homes are fit for human habitation.”