As 2018 draws to a close, the pressure on government to scrap Section 21 no-fault evictions continues to grow.
Since Croydon became the first local authority to back abolition of Section 21 back in early October, four more councils have followed suit: Cambridge on October 18th, Brent on November 26th, and Southwark and Lewisham on November 28th. Though these are all Labour-run councils, motions calling for an end to Section 21 were passed with cross-party support: all Liberal Democrat and Green councillors in Cambridge and Southwark voted for the motion, and in Brent three Conservative councillors backed ending Section 21.
In many cases, council motions drew attention to the role of Section 21 in causing homelessness, which in turn places a financial burden on local authorities in terms of temporary accommodation costs. Southwark’s motion noted that the proportion of homelessness cases caused by private sector evictions in the borough had increased a remarkable six-fold since 2010.
That all but one of the councils passing motions backing ending Section 21 are in London comes as no surprise, given that boroughs in London and the Southeast have some of the highest proportions of private renters along with the highest numbers of homelessness cases and the sharpest rent rises over the last decade. Mayor of London Sadiq Khan has made reform of the private rented sector – including rent caps, ending Section 21 and the introduction of Scottish-style open-ended tenancies - a key political priority.
If you are a councillor or simply a member of a political party, you can help get your council to pass a motion calling on the government to end Section 21. Take a look at our model motion and get in touch via firstname.lastname@example.org.
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