On 12th November 2020 the House of Lords asked questions of Government on the Covid-19 lockdown and its impact on homelessness and rough sleepers. The Bishop of Durham asked a question:
The Lord Bishop of Durham [V]: The Salvation Army has an innovative project for short-term housing solutions by using “meanwhile use” land to provide high-quality modular homes rooted in church communities and supported by wider community groups. This gives the residents the provision of a flat and the relational support of the community. What consideration have Her Majesty’s Government given to the Salvation Army’s innovative approach to homelessness and similar projects? Continue reading “Bishop of Durham asks about innovative solutions to homelessness”
On 12th November 2020 the Bishop of St Albans received a written answer to a question on rural infrastructure investment:
The Lord Bishop of St Albans: To ask Her Majesty’s Government, further to their decision to launch a one-year Spending Review, whether their multi-year capital allocation for priority infrastructure projects includes projects in rural areas, in particular (1) the Community Housing Fund, especially for rural affordable housing schemes, and (2) the Village Hall Improvement Grant Fund. [HL9791] Continue reading “Bishop of St Albans asks about rural infrastructure investment”
On 10th November the Bishop of St Albans received written answers to questions he had tabled on gambling, housebuilding, and equipment used to construct Uighur detention facilities.
The Lord Bishop of St Albans: To ask Her Majesty’s Government what assessment they have made of NatWest’s announcement of a 48-hour gambling block for debit cards to reduce gambling-related harm; and what action they are taking to encourage other companies in the banking sector to adopt similar policies. [HL9946] Continue reading “Bishop of St Albans asks about gambling harm, housebuilding and Uighurs in China”
On 4th November 2020 the House of Lords heard the repeat of a Government statement on economic support during the second Covid-19 lockdown. The Bishop of St Albans asked a question in response:
The Lord Bishop of St Albans [V]: My Lords, there has been a particular problem in the rental market, whereby renters and landlords have suffered as a result of these latest measures. Given the temporary protection from eviction for those living in tier 2 and 3 areas, could the Government confirm whether an eviction ban will now be extended across the country and whether they will now develop a strategy to help tackle arrears brought on by Covid to avoid a tragic spike in homelessness? Continue reading “Bishop of St Albans asks whether ban of evictions will be extended”
On 4th November 2020 Baroness Greengross asked the Government “what steps they are taking to ensure that changes to the planning system will deliver more homes that are accessible for people with disabilities.” The Bishop of St Albans asked a further question:
The Lord Bishop of St Albans [V]: My Lords, with regions such as the north-west, the north-east and Yorkshire hosting less than one disabled-access home for every 100 homes, and regions such as the West Midlands hosting just over one disabled-access home for every 300 homes, given that 15.2% of the population is elderly and 18% of the population is disabled, is it now time that the Government mandated targets for disabled-access homes rather than simply relying on local authorities? Continue reading “Bishop of St Albans asks about targets for disabled-access homes”
On 28th October the Bishop of St Albans received a written answer to a question on housing construction:
The Lord Bishop of St Albans: To ask Her Majesty’s Government, further to the Written Answers by Lord Greenhalgh on 1 October (HL8296) and on 19 October (HL8828), what assessment they have made of the impact of tackling the practices of ‘land banking’ and ‘intentional delay’ on the market absorption rates in the housing market. [HL9442] Continue reading “Bishop of St Albans ask Government about land banking”
On 22nd October Lord Kennedy of Southwark asked the Government “what assessment they have made of the role of alms houses in the provision of housing for the elderly.” The Bishop of London asked a further question:
The Lord Bishop of London: My Lords, I declare my interests as stated in the register. The Church of England continues to provide excellent almshouses provision as a support to older people through its charities. There are over 30,000 almshouses in the UK and more than 1,000 new ones have been built in the last decade. Another 750 are in the pipeline, providing places of flourishing and support for the elderly. However, the complexities of the buildings themselves prohibit modern building standards being achieved. Will the Minister comment on whether Her Majesty’s Government will provide grants for local almshouse charities to upgrade their facilities within the complex planning frameworks associated with these buildings?
Continue reading “Bishop of London asks about support for almshouses to upgrade their facilities to older people”
On Monday 19th October the Bishop of St Albans received a written answer to a question on stalled housing developments:
The Lord Bishop of St Albans: To ask Her Majesty’s Government, further to the Written Answer by Lord Greenhalgh on 1 October (HL8296) and the White Paper Planning for the Future, published on 6 August, what assessment they have made of the reasons for low market absorption rates as the responsible factor for stalled developments. [HL8828] Continue reading “Bishop of St Albans asks Government about stalled housing developments”
On 13th October 2020 Baroness Thornhill asked the Government “what assessment they have made of the efficacy of the Housing Delivery Test.” The Bishop of St Albans asked a further question:
The Lord Bishop of St Albans [V]: My Lords, the ambition of the White Paper Planning for the Future, to streamline planning permission and impose building targets on local authorities fails to address the existing slow build-out rate that occurs once planning permission has been granted. Will the Government add provisions to ensure that local authorities have adequate scope to alter centralised algorithmic targets in accordance with local supply capabilities and build-out rates? Continue reading “Bishop of St Albans asks Government to speed up housebuilding process”
On 23rd September 2020 the House of Lords debated the Government’s Civil Procedure (Amendment No. 4) (Coronavirus) Rules 2020.
Two Motions were also debated alongside the Rules. The first to annul them “because they will permit evictions of individuals who have been served a notice of eviction between 23 March and 28 August before Parliament has had an opportunity to debate the impact of the Rules on (1) homelessness, and (2) the spread of COVID-19”.
The second “that the House regrets that they…will not continue to protect tenants from eviction, and calls on the Government to amend the Housing Act 1998 to give courts temporary discretion on evictions, including on evictions arising from rent arrears”.
The Bishop of Rochester, Rt Revd James Langstaff, spoke in the debate and supported the motion to regret. Continue reading “Bishop of Rochester speaks against Government rule to resume eviction procedures”