CIH responds to social housing green paper
Responding to the launch of the social housing green paper which James Brokenshire, secretary of state for communities, describes as a ‘new deal for social housing residents’, CIH deputy chief executive Gavin Smart said: "The social housing green paper makes an important contribution to the critical debate about what we think social housing is, what it does and what we want it to be in the 21st century.
"Proposals to strengthen the role of the regulator for social housing where housing providers’ services fall short of what their tenants deserve is something CIH argued for in our Rethinking Social Housing report and it's good to see government thinking in the same way.
"We welcome the aim to tackle the stigmatisation of social housing, an issue which our report highlighted. Our Ipsos Mori public opinion polling showed that 65 per cent of those interviewed felt that the negative view of people living in social housing is unfair.
"We are also pleased to see that government plans to consult on the rules on how local authorities can use the money they receive from Right to Buy sales as well as dropping plans to force local authorities to sell their most valuable homes.
"CIH has long argued for the removal of the barriers that prevent councils playing a full part in building the new affordable homes we so badly need.
"The green paper rightly recognises the importance of new supply but we are concerned that the plans for new affordable homes are not ambitious enough. Research shows we need a minimum of 78,000 of the most affordable homes each year, but in 2017/18 just over 5,000 were delivered – and we estimate that between 2012 and 2020 we will have lost 230,000 of these homes in total.
"This is why we have called on government to rebalance the £53 billion funding for housing so that affordable housing gets a fairer share than the 21 per cent it has now. This is essential if we are to make sure that everyone has a decent, affordable place to call home."