The Big Conversation

Social housing is in dire need of reform. That isn’t a radical statement.

Photos taken at the #NotOneDayMore #ToriesOut demonstartion, march, and rally at London's Parliament Square.

The Grenfell tragedy shone a spotlight on how social tenants can be ignored and that we need to re-examine our approach to social housing in the UK.

We must learn lessons from this and move forward, things have to change. And soon.

Shelter’s set up a commission, called the Big Conversation on Social Housing, in the wake of the tragedy to examine the state of social housing and what needs to change.

It is led by a panel of 16 independent commissioners from across the political spectrum and various walks of life – including Baroness Doreen Lawrence, Ed Miliband MP, Baroness Sayeeda Warsi and presenter / architect George Clarke.

The conversation will examine what social housing looks like in modern Britain, and its role in ending the housing crisis.

Speaking to the public

Shelter has been running a consultation with members of the public across the country. This began in March and will end on the 10th June 2018.

The consultation is composed of an online survey. There will also be a series of roadshows across the country and in-depth research.

The online survey is the simplest way for anyone to get involved and contribute towards shaping the future of social housing in England.

Following the consultation, the commission will spend five months pulling together all the information submitted and produce a report in November – giving a comprehensive overview of where social housing is currently in the UK, and where it should be heading. This report will then be presented to political party leaders.

Last week Baroness Doreen Lawrence, sent an email out to Shelter supporters on why our voices are so integral to the conversation. Her words epitomise our thoughts on this so I’ll conclude with those…

“The perpetual myth, is that everyone in social housing is uneducated and in low paid jobs. But Grenfell was home to a diverse mix of people, from NHS staff to artists. The myth is false. But even if it was true, it wouldn’t mean these people deserve to be ignored or unsafe.

“It’s clear that change is needed to make social housing strong again. But that won’t happen if we rely on the government alone.”

The survey closes on the 10th June and only takes about 10 mins to answer so I hope you will take part and make your voice heard during this conversation.

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