Corbyn commits to a million new homes

Labour has reaffirmed its commitment to build 500,000 new affordable homes.

labour manifesto

The party officially launched its manifesto at the University of Bradford claiming it was a “radical and responsible” plan for government.

Housing associations and local authorities were given pride of place with a clear commitment to enable them to provide social housing.

Leader Jeremy Corbyn said the party if elected would build a million new homes and at least half of them would be for social rent as part of the party’s commitment to creating affordable housing for rent and sale.

He said his party would govern “for the many not the few”.

“We intended to deliver on these hopes, on these plans,” he said. “It’s a blueprint of what Britain could be. This is a manifesto for all generations. Whatever the postcode you were born in, we will make sure you have the same chance as every other child.”

The party committed to making the role of housing minister a cabinet role who would run a department for housing that would deliver secure housing for all.

“If you look at our shadow cabinet you see experience, you see diversity,” the Labour leader said.

Other housing plans in the manifesto include rent controls for the private sector, scrapping the bedroom tax and introducing secure tenancies.

The party have also vowed to “act immediately to end the worst excesses” of welfare reform, including £2bn toward reforming and redesigning Universal Credit, “ending six week delays in payments.”

The manifesto also included a line about banning letting agent fees, a policy strongly supported in the sector.

The manifesto said: “By the end of the next Parliament we will be building at least 100,000 council and housing association homes a year for genuinely affordable rent or sale.”

Regional development banks would fund growth across the country for capital projects.

Other key policy announcements included an increase in income tax rate to 45p for people earning more than £80,000 and increased borrowing to pay for public services.

In another move that set Labour apart from its rivals, the party pledged to implement a version of the ‘Tobin tax’ –  a levy on financial transactions on stock exchanges.

The party also committed to providing 30 hours of free childcare for more than a million children aged between two and four.

Extra tax raised would be total £48.6bn including £6.5bn from tax avoidance programme.

A Conservative Party spokesman responded: “Their manifesto is already a shambles with un-costed pledges and broken promises, the nonsensical policies of Jeremy Corbyn and John McDonnell will lead to every family and business in Britain paying a heavy price.

“Only the strong and stable leadership of Theresa May and her Conservative team will protect the economy and the livelihoods of working families across the country.”

The Liberal Democrats are set to launch their manifesto tomorrow and Plaid Cymru has also launched its manifesto today.

Adam Lent, NLGN director said: “The Labour manifesto, while having many proposals that would lead to radical change for councils, lacks a coherent or inspiring vision for local government or devolution to communities.

“The most ambitious policies ask significant questions about the role of place, councils and communities: such as the National Care Service, National Education Service, the £250bn infrastructure programme, the million new homes pledge and the constitutional convention. All will have significant impacts on local government. However how these will work in practice for councils is not answered in the manifesto.”

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If you voted for one party based solely on their housing policies, which party would you vote for?

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