Housing crisis is ‘a national disaster’, conference hears

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"The housing crisis and the lack of affordable homes is affecting more and more people," Mark Chiverton UNISON South East Regional Convenor told delegates at the union's annual Local Government Conference in Brighton today.

"The dream of buying a home is beyond most public service workers", said Mr Chiverton, who told conference that the lack of social housing means that the reality of renting in the private sector is "soaring rents and eviction as a constant worry".

And at the same time "the number of homeless households is over 50,000".

Jane Armitage, Surrey County Branch Secretary and South East region service group executive member added that "the housing crisis has reached epic proportions and is a national disaster."

And the Housing and Planning Bill before MPs "will have further devastating effects".

Conference delegates also shared concerns about what has become known as 'generation rent', and the scandal of millions of young people effectively trapped in a cycle of expensive private rents. Several delegates remarked that the country needs to "build, build, build".

Conference called for continued opposition to the government’s housing strategy and for the union campaign for a socially progressive housing policy."

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