How Tory and inept is the social housing sector? … Very!!

How can the National Housing Federation, the Chartered Institute of Housing and all other social housing umbrella groups who all claim to speak with all politicians have missed that the Labour Party manifesto will get rid of the Tories LHA Maxima cap policy that will close all supported housing including refuge, hostel and sheltered housing?

How can all the usual housing journalists also miss exactly the same thing?

How can all social landlords also miss the same thing and all of the policy officers, policy analysts and business planners and strategist also miss this?

It either describes incompetence or a knowledge of but deliberate choice not to mention, which is the same as political bias or a combination of these.  Yet there is no doubt that the housing ‘sector’ have not commented on this at all.

A question that flows from this is also how incompetent is John Healey who as Labour’s Housing Minister has not told all housing actors that Labour will save supported housing whereas the Tories will close it due to the offensive LHA Maxima Cap policy?

For a sector that is more and more focusing on holistic joined-up policy with health and social care partners in order to uprate the importance of housing – which it should have done but hasn’t done for decades – such as sheltered housing with regard to hospital admissions and bed blocking in the NHS the non consideration and non-awareness that Labour will get rid of the LHA Maxima policy is ineptitude writ large.

It is true only a minority of social landlords have significant supported housing / supported living exposure yet a great many have exposure to sheltered housing in all its forms and some are exposed to the LHA Maxima Cap policy with their general needs stock too in low rent areas, which also sees the back door bedroom tax for pensioners even those who are fully occupying hit by the policy as I have detailed previously.

This significant policy affects the politically deserving and undeserving which has always been reflected in social landlord priorities too with the sector going out of its way to bend over backwards for deserving sheltered tenants and domestic abuse provision and a come-day go-day apathy for undeserving client groups such as young single homeless and other NIMBY cases … yet this getting rid of the Tory LHA Maxima cap policy affects the aforementioned deserving sheltered housing provision in much greater numbers and has simply been MISSED by the incompetence of the sector!

Thinking that Labour has no chance of office maybe explanation but it can never be excuse for such incompetence and oversight and the fact that Labour could form a majority coalition with around 270 seats (with SNP support) or even 255 or so with Lib Dem and SNP minority partners is not far-fetched at all given the latest opinion polls.

The Labour manifesto said at p64 that

And the mini-housing manifesto doubly confirms:

Why has the sector leaders, who I regularly refer to mockingly as the ‘great and the good’ NOT been aware of this Labour Party policy. It is quite clear that Labour has canvassed and spoken with all actors about the LHA Maxima cap policy in saying “…charities, housing associations and councils all say will lead to the closure(s)….” yet there has been not one word coming from NHF, CIH or anyone else including the housing media and its ‘great and good’ commentariat either!

All the usual suspects have been deafening in their silence!

I do’t need to draft yet another post that the social housing sector is not social at all, that is had no social purpose and it cares little about its customer in the tenant.  The facts speak for themselves on that.  Neither do I need to restate that is a corporate stance of the sector and doesn’t reflect the vast majority of views of housing professionals working within the sector.  Nor do I have to correctly state this reveals that the influence of tenants groups in the sector is woeful.

Yesterday I posted why it is a no brainer for all social tenants to vote Labour as it is in their best interests by a country mile AND it is also hugely in the best interests of all 8 million private tenants too, which it is.  The Labour Party policy on housing is vastly in the best interests of around 14 million renters who are voters … now think just how much rented housing would jump up the political agenda if only tenants knew that and if only social landlord s promoted that!!!

It is also greatly in the best interests of anyone renting and saving for a mortgage deposit too!  Yet despite all of that this election like all preceding general elections we have seen rented housing be yet again a non issue, one that scarcely got any mention at all in TV debates or in the national media … yet tenants are a huge latent electorate force that social landlords once again ignore in their myopic stupidity and deluded views of self-importance.

Tenants are voters and far more powerful than even a united housing sector would be yet the great and good of the sector ignore once again …

Plus ca change!



5 thoughts on “How Tory and inept is the social housing sector? … Very!!

  1. Well said Joe, as you state the housing sector still think a Tory win is on the cards and because of their charitable status are unable to enter into the political arena. Let’s hope that Labour win on Thursday and roll back the market-led approach the Tories have always favoured. I won’t hold my breath because in the words of Hanif Quershi “The English working class is a great disappointment”

    1. Hi Anil hope you’re well. The charitable status only stops ‘politicking’ and not landlords having contingency plans or for that matter raising awareness of Labour’s policy to get rid of LHA Maxima … which they haven’t done at least publicly. ‘Charitable status’ is in these circumstances mere excuse for me!

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