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Labour to force Commons vote on cladding removal

LABOUR will force a Commons vote on Monday to protect millions of leaseholders from being financially ruined by the expensive removal of dangerous building cladding.

The Tory government has failed to get cladding removed from as much as 16 per cent of Britain’s housing stock since the Grenfell Tower fire tragedy killed 72 people nearly four years ago.

Leaseholders have been hit with bills for removing it and the number of related bankruptcies is growing, Labour said. 

Labour warned that leaseholders and their tenants have lived in flammable homes throughout lockdown — and leaseholders are spending hundreds of pounds a month for interim safety fire measures, such as guards patrolling the premises.

The cladding also makes their properties much harder to sell.

Shadow housing secretary Thangam Debbonaire said: “Government inaction on the cladding scandal has gone on for too long. Buildings must be made safe and residents must be protected.”

Labour’s motion calls for the provision of upfront funds so cladding removal can start immediately, and for the government to pursue those responsible for the cladding to protect leaseholders and taxpayers from bearing the costs.

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