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Protection for England tenants won’t happen until 2023, says Gove



Protections for English tenants first proposed in 2019 will not happen until next year, Housing Secretary Michael Gove has said, as he admitted the government needs to “move more quickly” to protect tenants after the 2017 Grenfell Tower fire. must rise”.

The Gove is facing calls to urgently strengthen tenants’ rights after an investigation Death of two-year-old Awab Ishaqwhich found this month that the child died of a severe respiratory condition caused by exposure to mold in his home.

Ishaq’s parents told the inquest that they had raised concerns several times with their landlord, Rochdale Boroughwood Housing (RBH), but had been ignored.

Housing campaigners have drawn parallels between Ishak’s case and the Grenfell fire, which killed 72 people. Residents of a west London tower block had also raised safety concerns before the fire.

speaking on bbc radio 4 today program on Thursday, Gove said: “I freely admit and accept that in the aftermath of Grenfell we should have moved more quickly to take special action to help people in social housing. We Doing so now.

But he could not confirm when legislation aimed at strengthening formal protections for tenants would be introduced to parliament, saying only that the Renters Reform Bill “should come in 2023”.

At the core of that bill is a plan to repeal so-called “no-fault” evictions, which allow landlords to evict tenants without reason.

Polly Neat, chief executive of the housing charity Shelter, told today The program’s no-fault evictions scared tenants into complaining if they were given notice.

“The government has promised to fix [no-fault evictions] Its in the Renters Reform Bill, but where is the bill? That is the question,” she said.

Neat said people in the private rental sector as well as social housing tenants like Ishaq’s family needed stronger protections.

In 2016, a year before the Grenfell fire, Conservative MPs including Gove voted against a Labor amendment to the government’s Housing and Planning Bill that would have ensured all rented homes were fit for human habitation.

Teresa Pearce, the then shadow housing minister, pushed the amendment forward, citing concerns about moldy walls in rented homes. But at the time, the government argued that the move would unnecessarily increase costs to landlords.

Gove is now giving new powers to the social housing regulator and announced on Thursday it would cut Funding for RBH and other landlords who failed to protect tenants.

“my message [RBH] The clear is clear: Awab’s death was a tragedy that should never have happened. This happened because housing associations deliberately failed to maintain their properties at a decent standard, failed to heed complaints,” said Gove.

Neat said a stronger regulator would “really make a big difference”, but warned that stripping housing associations of funding would impact their ability to invest in high-quality housing.

“Don’t divert funding from their ability to build new, high-quality social homes because that is the real crisis,” she said.

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