You can read 9 more articles this month
A MULTIMILLION-POUND expansion of renters' unions that give power to ordinary people in rented accommodation would be funded by a Labour government.
Announcing the plans at Labour conference today, shadow housing secretary John Healey pledged to create a £20 million fund to support the expansion of renters’ unions.
The money is intended to help the organisations rapidly grow in number and give collective strength to the estimated 11.5m people in Britain who rent from private landlords.
Tenant unions are not well established in Britain, unlike in other European countries such as Germany. They aim to provide practical support and information, formal representation for tenants in disputes with landlords and also act as a lobbying body at a national level for renters.
Campaigners hope this will hugely help tenants, who have been hit with a rise of more than £1,800 a year in private rents since 2010.
Nick Ballard, an organiser with renters union Acorn, welcomed the news, saying that Labour is “on the right side of history.”
Mr Healey said: “Tenants who rent from private landlords have been hit hard by the housing crisis.
“Labour’s commitment is clear. We’ll give renters new rights to control rental costs, improve conditions and increase security.
“Renters’ unions help put power in the hands of tenants.
“And the next Labour government will fund set-up costs for these unions across the country to support renters to defend their rights and make the housing market fairer.”
A London Renters Union spokesman said: “Renter unions are vital to redressing the gross imbalance of power at the heart of our broken housing system.
“Millions of people are stuck paying extortionate rents they cannot afford, only to face eviction and homelessness at a moment’s notice.”
You can’t buy a revolution, but you can help the only daily paper in Britain that’s fighting for one by joining the 501 club.
Just £5 a month gives you the opportunity to win one of 17 prizes, from £25 to the £501 jackpot.
By becoming a 501 Club member you are helping the Morning Star cover its printing, distribution and staff costs — help keep our paper thriving by joining!
You can’t buy a revolution, but you can help the only daily paper in Britain that’s fighting for one by become a member of the People’s Printing Press Society.
The Morning Star is a readers’ co-operative, which means you can become an owner of the paper too by buying shares in the society.
Shares are £1 each — though unlike capitalist firms, each shareholder has an equal say. Money from shares contributes directly to keep our paper thriving.
Some union branches have taken out shares of over £500 and individuals over £100.
You can’t buy a revolution, but you can help the only daily paper in Britain that’s fighting for one by donating to the Fighting Fund.
The Morning Star is unique, as a lone socialist voice in a sea of corporate media. We offer a platform for those who would otherwise never be listened to, coverage of stories that would otherwise be buried.
The rich don’t like us, and they don’t advertise with us, so we rely on you, our readers and friends. With a regular donation to our monthly Fighting Fund, we can continue to thumb our noses at the fat cats and tell truth to power.
Donate today and make a regular contribution.