Under this ideologically driven government, because of changes to the Housing Benefit system, many thousands of tenants will be driven from their homes, their neighbourhoods, their children from their schools and away from their friends and support networks. In addition many, as a result, will also lose their jobs.
Were all the tenants of similar ethnic backgrounds this would be classed as ‘ethnic cleansing’ and would be illegal under international law and questions would be raised in the United Nations and most likely sanctions imposed on the UK. The tenants though are not all similar only sharing the inability to pay criminally high rents. They will be forced to move to the outer suburbs, assuming that accommodation there is available, thus leaving their old homes for the wealthy. This is surely ‘Social Cleansing’ which to our ever lasting shame is ‘legal’. In addition no mention has been made of the costs of moving; credit reference checks, deposits, carpets, curtains etc and the actual cost of removal. These additional burdens to placed on people of low income.
Yes I can see that some housing benefit costs are ludicrously high and unsustainable but putting the blame on the tenants is like blaming the victim of a mugger for being in that particular street at that particular time of the day.
So what could be done in ‘fairness’, that much abused word of late? Cap the current rent as it is and leave the tenants where they are. When they move or die then bring in the Housing Benefit level at that proposed, for new tenancies. If the landlords don’t like it, let them squirm or threaten them with compulsory purchase at the lowest national rate. The real problem though is of course a lack of affordable housing. A large and sustained building programme should be embarked upon to house the 1.8 million on housing waiting lists and this would also create thousands of jobs not only in building but in manufacturing and the service sector. The only problem of course is that Conservatives are also capitalists through and through and capitalism depends on a pool of unemployed to keep wages down and a housing shortage to keep those prices up and so increase profits.