To the shock of almost nobody Knight of the Realm Keir Starmer has stuck the knife into the very people he is supposed to be sticking up for as Labour leader – the poorest.
The newly selected Labour leader enraged the core Labour base by u turning on protection for renters while calling on the Tory government to give billions to New Labour & Blair backer Richard Branson.
Low income householders tend to rent. Under Sir Keir Starmer’s new position, Labour have betrayed the Party’s previous commitment to support renters.
Horrendously, this is being done in tandem with a demand to bail out Richard Branson.
Under the previous Labour leader, Labour had said renters should get three months rent free from landlords and that this should be underwritten by the government if need be. At the end of April, Sir Starmer watered this down to a payment deferral scheme.
“Starmer’s policy fails in a number of important respects. Firstly, the three month ‘ban on evictions’ announced by the Government doesn’t offer much protection. You don’t have to look too far for examples of landlords still forcing tenants out despite the so-called protections.
Take the example of Rajesh Jayaseelan, a married father of three who died of Coronavirus after being evicted by his landlord. Friends says Jayaseelan’s landlord had told him to leave because he was worried his work as a minicab driver would make him more likely to catch the virus. He’d been forced to sleep in a car until he found another room in shared accommodation. However, he’d concealed his condition and avoided seeking medical help for fear that his condition would see him evicted once again.
For people like Jayaseelan, the Government’s protections mean very little. All they do is extend the notice a landlord is required to give; it doesn’t stop them from enforcing an eviction.
Equally, any deferral of rent does little more than force tenants further into debt. People’s income is not being deferred; it’s being lost. With many people struggling to make ends meet, there is no guarantee they will be able to pay off these debts.
The harsh reality is that Starmer’s scheme, like the Government’s, fails to understand the practical experience of tenants on the ground. It doesn’t provide any financial relief and, in reality, will not stop evictions. At best it kicks the problem further down the line leading to what ‘Shelter’ has termed a ‘Tsunamic of evictions’, when life returns to normal.” – L.B.
“In a post-Covid19 era, Labour has everything to gain from being bold & putting transformative change on the political agenda,” he said. “That doesn’t mean stacks of fully worked up policy. It’s way too soon. But we do need to start shaping that debate.” – Clive Lewis MP
Within weeks of being elected Labour leader, Keir Starmer has taken Labour back to bashing low income renters & bailing out billionaires.