Labour attacks government over housing shortage

Published on Wednesday, 08 January 2014 10:03
Written by Daniel Mason

Labour will today attack the government's failure to tackle the acute housing shortage which is central to the cost-of-living crisis across Britain.

The party will highlight new figures which show that in England and across seven regions the number of homes built was less than half that needed to keep up with demand in 2012/2013.

Wednesday's Opposition Day debate will highlight the government's failure to build the homes the country needs worsening the housing shortage which is central to the growing cost-of-living crisis across Britain. This means home ownership is becoming harder not easier for young people and families to achieve.

Rents have hit record highs and are rising twice as fast as wages. The number of people in the queue for a social home is at a record high of five million.

Hilary Benn, the shadow communities and local government secretary, said: "Three years into the Tory-led government, there are still simply not enough homes being built to meet the needs of young people, families and many older people looking to downsize into suitable accommodation.

"Housebuilding remains below half of the numbers required, and that's why Ed Miliband has asked Sir Michael Lyons to come forward with proposals to reform the land market, widen the range of housebuilders, enable towns without enough building land to grow to meet need and encourage the building of new towns and garden cities.

Emma Reynolds MP, shadow housing minister said: "The growing housing shortage is central to the cost-of-living crisis but this government has refused to take the action needed and is presiding over the lowest levels of house building in peacetime since the 1920s.

"The failure of the government to build the homes the country needs and to tackle the cost-of-living crisis will mean home ownership remains out of reach of low and middle-income earners, rents will continue to rise faster than wages and waiting lists will grow ever longer.

"Labour is determined to tackle this housing crisis and will increase house building to at least 200,000 a year by 2020."

Source: Labour Party

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